I have a hot water kettle. You put water inside, press the button, and it instantly heats up. The water starts to bubble, steam toots out from the top, and you hear a whistle. The water becomes very, very hot which is why sometimes before the water boils I click the button off so that the water won't boil so powerfully.

I have a hard time saying no. I have an even harder time asking for help. Even when I was a child I would get into fights with my mother, arguing with her not to buy me so many clothes.

I know how to give, but I don’t know how to receiveI know how to give, but I don't know how to receive.

Part of this is due to my personality. I'm self-motivated and hard working. I don't take "no" as an answer. And part of this is due to how my parents raised me, to the tremendous amount of emotional and physical responsibilities that they gave me turning me into the Mommy of the Mommy.

When I married my husband I learned that if I didn't allow him to give to me, it wouldn't work. In Hebrew the word "to give" is the same spelled frontwards as it is backwards to teach us that when you give you inevitably receive and when you receive you automatically give. However, I must admit that even with him it is so hard for me to ask for anything.

I receive phone calls all the time. "Elana, can you…" before they even finish their request I have already said yes and committed myself to…fill in the blank. I work, I teach, I cook all our meals, clean our home, do all the shopping, receive guests, take care of the children…really I do everything.

I work full time, am a part-time student and am a full time home-maker as well. Why? I ask myself this, "Why?" What is driving me? I'm stubborn, strong-willed. Maybe it's pride or arrogance? Am I afraid of not being loved or accepted? Will everyone still love me if I'm not perfect or superwoman?

I put water in the kettle and turn the button on. The water boils, it gets hotter and hotter. Steam comes out and the kettle starts to whistle.

A year ago I felt incredibly tired, beyond exhausted. I woke up-tired. I went to sleep-tired. My whole day was full of fatigue. I went to a doctor. I did a blood test. My thyroid stimulating hormone levels were very high indicating that my thyroid was sluggish and not working as it should. An ultrasound also showed a cyst on my thyroid. One of the symptoms of hypothyroidism is exhaustion. At the same time our financial situation became more difficult. I pushed myself to work harder and harder. It's no wonder that I was so tired!

To add to the list of things that I do I am also a healer (I practice reflexology and massage therapy as well as yoga therapy and meditation) and I started to examine my own condition. Holistically the thyroid is related to faith. The neck (the physical location of the thyroid) is related to one's outlook and stubbornness.

"Elana, if you don't stop this you are going to break," I told myself. "Elana, you need to get help!" I started looking for someone to come help me once a week to clean my home. But all I could do was tell myself we couldn't afford it. Even though I knew we needed it, it is just so hard to change. My husband became annoyed with me. "We need help! It's not a luxury it is a necessity."

I prayed and turned to the Creator. "Please help me to strengthen my faith. Let me rely only on You and not on myself! Send me the right people to teach me how to receive because ultimately whatever I take from anyone is accepting and taking that which You give me."

It’s not a luxury it is a necessityI read Chassidic works on strengthening one's faith in G‑d, went to acupuncture to relax me and I eventually accepted help. My TSH levels went back down in less than a month and a half.

When G‑d created the world He did it all by Himself. The description recorded in the Torah is in the third person singular. However, on the sixth day when G‑d created man the Torah says, "Let's make man." The commentators explain that G‑d was speaking to the angels. Even though He created Man alone, by saying "Let's" He teaches us humility. He also teaches us that there is nothing wrong with asking for or receiving help!

I would hate to think that one day my children will grow up and feel inferior because they can't do something on their own. I would be devastated if they don't turn to me to ask for advice or assistance because I taught them that they had to be perfect and to do everything by themselves.

So once again I put water in my kettle. I turn it on. But before I wear myself thin, before I find myself feeling resentful or overly tired, I press the button off. I stop, I pray, I ask for help. And I feel fortunate that for now I have prevented myself from bubbling over.