Back when I was in labor with my first child I became somewhat fixated with how field workers in olden times would just squat in the field to deliver their child and just get back up and go back to work. (Too much studying literature clearly addled my brain.) All the high-tech fuss around my hospital delivery seemed so unnatural and the simple fact that I appeared unable to simply push out a baby and get on with my day was rubbing me the wrong way.
I am tough. Ask anyone. That I couldn’t accomplish a simple feat that countless women had easily managed throughout history rankled.
My OB, never one to mince words, after hour 25 or so of me moaning about the women in the field, leaned towards me and quietly, though rather forcefully, told me on no uncertain terms that if I didn’t shut up already about the damn women in the fields she would pack up and leave.
I shut up.
Which is a good thing because had she left I don’t know who would have performed the c-section that finally allowed my daughter, painfully trapped behind a too small pelvis, to be born.
In the field, we would have both died.
Admitting defeat, having to ask for help, isn’t something that comes easily to me. As I mentioned earlier, I am tough. It’s a point of honor for me. I come from a long line of tough, self-sufficient women, and I don’t enjoy being the one who sometimes can’t cut it on her own.
And yet, despite being really proud of the strength which has gotten me through some gnarly times, I’ve had to learn that being unapologetically strong must to go hand in hand with being able to recognize when you need help and with being able to not only accept that help, but to welcome it, and sometimes to even ask for it.
When you are the woman who can always stand on her own two feet, when you’re the one people turn to in a crisis, when you’re the tough one who always pushes through challenges with a smile, the people around you get lulled into feeling like you really are invincible, that you really don’t need help. It’s a catch-22, especially on that day when you do find yourself unable to go on without help.
On that day it’s a blessing to find someone by your side who can see right through your bravado and will offer you the help you might be too proud to ask for. Accepting that help is just another sign of strength, not weakness.
Learning to accept help gracefully isn’t the only way I’m unapologetically strong. Every day I feel like I have to fight for what I believe in all while working, taking care of my family, running my household, volunteering at school, and doing the million things a mom has to do over the course of 24hours. Degree for Women understands that to get it all done we have to be able to rely on our deodorant (oh and do I ever love and rely on my deodorant!) and has just launched Degree Women Clinical Protection with motionSENSE in the yummy smelling Cotton Fresh.
Check out the great Unapologetically Strong Facebook contest that just launched today. You can win $5k to help you reach your goal! (Contest runs from today until September 26th.) You can follow Degree Women on Facebook and on Twitter to see more unapologetically strong testimonials!
Need some help feeling inspired? Check out Erin Andrews’, gorgeous sportscaster, who is blatantly and awesomely unapologetically strong!
“Please note: This is a sponsored post from One2One Nework and Degree Women®. I received product (yay deodorant!) and incentives. As always, all opinions stated and stories shared are my own.”