You Are Enough!

#YouAreEnough!

The opposite of “never enough” isn’t abundance or more than you could ever imagine. The opposite of scarcity is “enough.” ~Brené Brown, Social Work Professor and Researcher 

***

I’ve been going through a bonafide, real deal, legit, no joke existential crisis. I can’t count the number of times throughout the past year and a half that I’ve seriously questioned my existence. It all started on April 16, 2020. That’s the day I received the miracle of a heart transplant. It was about a month into COVID lockdown. That one-two punch nearly knocked me out emotionally.

The COVID restrictions/transplant combo pushed me to the sidelines for the first time in my life. Physically and medically recovering from transplant surgery kept me from doing much for about nine months. Immunosuppressant meds to protect my new heart from rejection has locked me up in COVID prison since. Before all of this, I dreamed a little bigger and worked a little harder anytime mediocrity and inferiority demons began seeping into my consciousness. 

Since work and community leadership aren’t at my disposal anymore, I’ve fallen into a deep and dark funk of unworthiness. I question my place in this world at least a few times a week. Strengthening my faith, reading philosophy, and working with a psychologist are helping me weather the storm raging in my mind. A glimmer of clarity opened up when my therapist introduced me to Brené Brown’s groundbreaking research about scarcity and “never enough.”  

Every person reading this post knows what I’m talking about. There is so much pressure to be perfect. The best partner. The best parent. The best child. The best sibling. The best breadwinner. The best friend. Meeting one of those standards is a tall order. Meeting all of them is impossible. Yet, here we are trying to do just that. Social media has made trying the impossible excruciatingly painful. Not good enough for this. Not good enough for that. Sound familiar? Whatever it is we aspire to, it’s never enough.

To combat unrealistic self-imposed expectations, experts suggest making a list of good qualities and accomplishments. Reflecting on it serves as a reminder of one’s value and place in this world. I wrote a poem instead of listing my thoughts. When doubt creeps in, my own words are a safe harbor. I hope my prose inspires you to write your list. Because…#YouAreEnough!

***

I Am Enough

An idyllic childhood was filled with dreams.

What will I be?

College basketball coach, baseball manager, an important man? 

The sky was the limit, they all said.

Life didn’t quite work out that way.

But, I am enough.

Sandra is one of my three loves.

The best husband I set out to be.

Career, politics, working late, and community work filled my days. 

Carousing with extended family filled my “free time.” 

Handyman, NOT ME! Gardner, NOT ME! Plumber, NO WAY! 

Movie night, dinners, dancing, and laughing, YES!

I’m not the best husband, but I’ve done my best.

I am enough.

Marisa and Erica are two of my three loves.

The best father I set out to be.

 One-on-one time with each was scarce.

Coached youth sports, advised academic decathlon.

Chaperoned field trips, volunteered in class.

We three love music, books, art, history, and politics. 

Inside jokes, Giants, Niners, Warriors too. 

I’m not the best father, but I’ve done my best.

I am enough.

The sky was the limit, they all said.

High School Varsity Basketball Coach

High School Junior Varsity Baseball Manager

School Board President, Corporate VP

BUT…

Big Deal! I fell short of boyhood dreams.

I never “cut down the nets” or raised arms after winning a campaign.

Executive paychecks disappeared when my family needed them most. 

NEVERTHELESS…

I’m an important man.

Sandra, Marisa, and Erica say so.

I’m not the best at anything

But, I am enough.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s