Recently while reading a book, I saw this statement: “I heard once that most people who choke to death on food do it in close proximity to someone who could have saved them.” My thought at first is why? Why wouldn't I ask for help, whether I have the knowledge or not that they do in fact, know the Heimlich? I feel like its the perfect time to start playing Charades, make smoke signals, shake them, or whatever is needed to ask for help and save your life.
But then I continued reading: “What happens is that they're sitting at a table eating with a group, and when they begin to choke they feel embarrassed that they're struggling. Inevitably, they stand up from the table, and when their friends ask if they're okay or need help, they wave them away like everything's fine. They go to another room so their struggle won't be a bother to anyone. It's not until they're alone and really fighting for breath that they realize they need assistance, but by then it's too late.” This is where I said out loud, “Ah okay, now I get it.” There is a very big chance I would do the same thing to avoid embarrassment. I would do many, many things to avoid embarrassment.
One of the biggest embarrassments of my life was because I was trying, without success, to avoid embarrassment. I know I've spoken about it before, but I don't believe I've used it here before, and if I have...well enjoy the ride again. I didn't. In fifth grade I went to my elementary school's fall fest. I lived near by, so my dad told me I could go if I took my sisters. I enjoyed all the things they had to offer; face painting, carnival games, and treats. Then my friends and I decided to enjoy the main event - the hay ride. Our school was outside of town, so this weekend family event brought out many people and everyone was interested in taking a lap on the hay ride. When it came my turn, the ride itself wasn't really anything to write home about. We circled the school on an highly packed trailer, only to be at the starting point once again. My friends hurried off the ride and stood waiting for me to get off too, but the only thing was I couldn't. I didn't know how and so many people were getting on the trailer as many other people were getting off. It was just chaos. My friends stood by helplessly as I sat back down for the next ride because I didn't know what else to do.
Let me tell you, the ride didn't get any more thrilling that time around. To be honest, I was too distracted making my exit plan when the ride stopped again. Once we stopped, the chaos again ensued. So I decided to go to the front of the trailer by the hitch to step off. As I stepped, my foot slipped and I fell hitting my head on the hitch and I imagine it was as painful as that sounds. I wouldn't know because I was consumed with the embarrassing truth that my dress was no longer pointed towards my feet the way it was designed, but had instead joined me up by my face. I was so worried about drawing attention to myself by asking for help off the ride, that I instead drew all the attention with my dress up over my face and a possible head injury.
Proverbs 12:15 "The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise."
“Be strong enough to stand alone, smart enough to know when you need help, and brave enough to ask for it.” said Ziad K. Abdelnour. Sometimes we choke, sometimes we need help, and being too afraid to admit it will only hurt us in the long run. When those hurts come, they come heavy and can be overwhelming. It takes action from us to make it different. Get help. First, go to God. You weren't meant to face life on your own and your creator (the one who loves you more than you know) is just waiting for you to ask for Him to step in. There is also a church full of people who want to carry your burden with you and hold you up when you can't stand. You aren't alone and you don't deserve to choke when you're in such close proximity to help. Take advantage of the spirit led family here at FPC that wants to see you succeed.
Seek help, don't choke.