I am Enough from Allison Czarnecki

I am Enough from Allison Czarnecki

I am one of eight children. Eight. I’m number six in the lineup, each of us 2 years apart. Growing up I never got enough. Enough attention, love, time, material comfort, encouragement, help with homework. I was never noticed, I just faded into the background calm and quiet. Mellow, my mother called me. As a teenager I never felt skinny enough, pretty enough, smart enough, good enough at sports. I fell into the pool of mediocrity in every category of my life. Although I played soccer, basketball, volleyball, and was an active rock climber, I never excelled at any of them enough to be a stand out player. Ditto for school, dating, school government, extracurriculars. I’ve struggled my whole life with being enough of anything to matter. Does mediocrity at life count? Will it matter if I cross the finish line in the middle of the pack? The problem is all in the perception. My perception is skewed; I’m lost with my head down, navigating my way through the world making small, almost imperceptible day-to-day decisions about my future, hoping to make some kind of difference. It’s all enough.

I? I. Am. Enough.

I don’t even remember now, only 15 years out, what my grades were like in high school or the names of the girls who were horrible to me, the ones who contributed to what ended up being a long period of anorexia and self loathing that lasted well into college. I don’t remember any of the specific sporting events in high school during which I warmed the bench, or even as a recovering anorexic, what I weighed when I graduated from high school. None of it is relevant. What matters now is that I am enough of a mother, wife, sister, friend, citizen of humanity. I am enough to myself. I am kind, I am fun, I am fiercely loyal, I am fair, I am funny, I am extremely compassionate, I am nurturing. I’m smart, smarter than I give myself credit for. I matter. My contribution to the world right this second matters. You matter too. Whether or not you are enough of anything to any other human being in this world, be enough for you.

………..

About Allison Czarnecki

Allison Czarnecki is a writer, mother, wife, blogger, and entrepreneur.  She blogs about family/home/style/travel on her lifestyle blog Petit Elefant, writes a style column for Utah Mama, and frequently contributes to freelance projects involving travel and style.  In her nonexistent spare time she coordinates the annual SocialLuxe Lounge which takes place the night before BlogHer. Bio photo courtesy of Justin Hackworth.

20 Comments
  • marina
    Posted at 14:56h, 15 June Reply

    thank you Allison for sharing your story and beautiful words. and thank you for writing: be enough for you! I will cherish these words.

  • Rachel - Southern Fairytale
    Posted at 17:53h, 15 June Reply

    I love this. Allison, thank you for writing this, sharing this and being who you are.
    Tracey, thank you for this feature.
    xo

  • Ciaran
    Posted at 18:37h, 15 June Reply

    You are MORE than enough Allison. You are fabulous, hard working, determined and then some. I wish you the recognition and rewards you crave and deserve for all your efforts.

  • Boston Mamas
    Posted at 18:38h, 15 June Reply

    You are more than enough my friend. It is an honor to know you — thank you for bravely sharing your words here, and thank you Tracey for providing the forum. xoxox Christine

  • Katie @ cakes, tea and dreams
    Posted at 19:43h, 15 June Reply

    Beautiful. A big amen – you are enough for YOU. Love it.

  • Rachael
    Posted at 05:12h, 16 June Reply

    Dude. You are totally more than enough . . . and you don’t even have to shower! 😉

  • Jyl Johnson Pattee
    Posted at 05:16h, 16 June Reply

    Fiercely loyal is right. And I feel lucky to be the recipient of it. I heart you, Allison!

    Awesome feature, Tracey!

  • kami
    Posted at 06:10h, 16 June Reply

    Beautifully written, Allison! You are so right, in the end it all comes down to just loving ourselves. Thanks for that. And Thanks Tracey for a great forum.

  • Erin
    Posted at 12:57h, 16 June Reply

    I love blogs and the power that we have to lift up one another by sharing what makes us tick…what makes us laugh…what holds us back…what sneaks into our mind when no one is watching. To hear that a person like Allison – a person that is a genuine treasure – has ever felt "mediocre" has the amazing ability to give the rest of us permission to let go of our baggage and soar. I agree with Ciaran…you are MORE THAN ENOUGH.

  • jane
    Posted at 14:33h, 16 June Reply

    oh allison, thank you for writing this. so that I know to give you a giant HUG next time I see you…for being as close to you as I am, the person I know today really doesn’t reflect the person you once were…instead is such a beautiful evolution of that less confident girl into an AMAZING woman who can literally do anything. love ya bunches…seriously. where would I (and the world) be without you?

  • jane
    Posted at 14:34h, 16 June Reply

    oh, and by the way, erin said EXACTLY what I was thinking – well put! yes, yes! 🙂

  • mindy
    Posted at 17:34h, 16 June Reply

    this is a beautiful blog post. very warm and heartfelt. i felt it slipping into my heart as i read it. i feel even more like "i am enough" after reading this.

    thank you for sharing.

  • Marie
    Posted at 22:58h, 16 June Reply

    So much of this post I have found in myself. As one of eight as well, the baby, I felt forgotten. I had to make my own way, climb to the top, be heard. But I do feel that adulthood is when you really shine, you’ve taken experiences from the past and turned them into powerful positives for the future. I love this post. Allison, thank you for sharing such intimate things. And Tracey, awesome!

  • Alma
    Posted at 15:42h, 18 June Reply

    LOVE this! Very strong, honest, and beautiful, Ali! Love you!!

  • stef
    Posted at 18:25h, 18 June Reply

    wow, this really hit me….i may not come from a 8 kid family but i could relate…beautiful and thank you!

    xo

  • Kimberly
    Posted at 19:39h, 22 June Reply

    Wow. I can so relate. I’m one of 6 and I always felt like there was never enough. And I feel like as an adult I try so hard to be more than enough to everyone and every thing … as a way to make up for not feeling like I got what I needed as a kid. Thank you for sharing. You are right. We are enough. And if I change my perspective I will be able to see that.

  • Beah
    Posted at 19:04h, 21 July Reply

    Beautiful words, they touch the heart. At last I feel I am enough as well, my family and friends love me for who I am, and for me, that’s more than enough. I know I am important in the world and recognise and accept compliments after years of thinking I didn’t deserve them. Thank you for sharing.

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