This year, my one little word found me, instead of me finding it. I’ve not always participated in the choosing of one word to guide our year, but I found that I didn’t have a choice this year.
My word is ENOUGH.
If you look up that word in the dictionary, you’ll find it has several meanings. It can be an adjective or an adverb, or even a pronoun, according to Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary. I believe the version that fits what I want for my OLW is using it as an adjective.
Sometimes, I have problems with self-esteem. If you knew me, you might not believe this, as I appear confident. I have leadership qualities but they are as a quietly assertive person, as I was told in college by the faculty preceptor for our peer tutoring services. I was a peer tutor for the College of Nursing. These quietly effective leadership skills have always served me well, but a downfall to having them is the quietness with which I possess my skills.
Sometimes, the fact that I am not loud, confrontational, or boastful leads me to be ignored or at the very least, misunderstood. No one in the community in which I lived for the last 24 years knew me as a nurse or pediatric nurse practitioner. I was primarily known as a mom of three very able, and gifted sons. I became a volunteer and a student advocate, a master gardener volunteer, a substitute teacher, and finally a community educator, and environmental education presenter-resource.
But, rarely, am I asked to give a professional opinion. And this sometimes bothers me. After all, as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, I diagnosed and treated children. You have to have enough knowledge to stand by your opinion of what is wrong (what the diagnosis might be). I’m not saying I have imposter syndrome, I’m saying that I’m really not known for the skills I have, and therefore not asked to weigh in. This can be disquieting and discouraging, as well as frustrating, especially because I value the knowledge I’ve gained over the years and through my education.
And while I have come to terms with this, sometimes it begins to bother me again. It is usually when I’m not asked for my informed opinion. I’ve written about this in the past.
But here’s where my OLW comes in.
I AM ENOUGH!
I have to remind myself of this. I fully met the demands of ANY role I held and could hold sway in a conversation about said role and how one prepares or is educated for that role, as well as how the role should be carried out as a professional.
Secondly, this year has made me realize that I HAVE ENOUGH.
How many can say that and mean it? Most people want more than they have. I can honestly say, I have a GREAT life and it’s ENOUGH.
At some point people need to stop seeking, climbing, and clamoring for more. Be happy with what you have because many people have less.
So, my one little word for 2023 is ENOUGH.
I started a poem about it last week, and unfortunately, have not had time to return to working on it. But, I’ll share the beginning of the draft.
One little word Says so very much About my self-esteem And such. I am bright, educated, And passionate too. I’ve stood up for the environment, So the pigeons can continue to coo. Nursing was my focus. As a young adult, I knew what it took, Commitment, dedication, a gentle touch, As well as reading book upon book. But teaching was my heart’s desire, It took me to a second degree and career, Applying what I already knew, In front of children, I knew how to steer, Their hearts toward our Earth. Through topics like trees, Prairies, monarchs, and bats, Oh, and let's not forget bees. Filling their minds with such wonder That if only one retains hope, Our earth, our home, our lives will fill with joy, not mope. I am enough to do these jobs and probably more, To be a mother, a nurse, a teacher, Filling me with riches I will never ignore. © Draft, Carol Labuzzetta, 2023. Published American Poet and Author. Today is Poetry Friday! Our host is Tabatha at her blog, The Opposite of Indifference. Thanks for hosting Tabatha!
A wonderful word! And, it’s true. You are enough. This whole world is struggling right now. A person with quiet assertiveness is most welcome, by me at least, to be a balm on those that need it. Thank you for finding, ‘enough.’ I wish you many wonderful encounters with it this year. And, hooray for those pigeons still coo-ing.
Carol, (oops. I wasn’t finished, obviously. Don’t know how that happened. You and I both this week.) Funny!
Yes, indeed, you are enough. How interesting that you are a nurse practitioner. I didn’t remember learning that about you before. What a variety you have experienced. I also like the application of your OLW that you HAVE enough. That is such an important message: “stop seeking, climbing, and clamoring for more”
All of your roles have made valuable contributions to society — how lovely to be able to look and see that you have been using your gifts so generously!
Carol, enough is a special OLW that will guide you on your journey this year. A poem to your one word is a good place to start as you broaden your perspective on who you are. I did not know that you were a nurse and then became a teacher. You have several gifts to share with the world.
It’s a great word for self-care, acknowledging that you have skills in many areas, and then continuing through the year enjoying the journey because you are really enough!
I find such wisdom and comfort in your post. Your voice may be quiet but it exudes strength. It is had to know enough and not get swept up in the always wanting more
Such a beautiful reminder, always. I love to say “enough” as I exhale, and then just “be” (our friend Carol’s perfect rejoinder).