Just Be Enough: At the Back of the Boasting Bus

 ”Some people strengthen others just by being the kind of people they are.”

- John Gardner

 

 

Some emotions do not come easy for me. Bragging is one of them. As much as I’d like to think that I am good at something I have always relegated myself to the back of every bus with every word of praise or compliment.

I am just not very good at thinking much of myself.

Instead I’m great at making YOU feel good about yourself and your achievements. I am your best cheerleader and your biggest fan. However, when it comes to looking at myself in the mirror and finding the good, amazing, wonderful person you may tell me I am, I am often at a loss.

Just so you know…it was very hard to write that.

I envy women who can believe in their abilities and run (not walk) after their dreams, confidant in their success. I know that many times it might be a farce, they just might be as scared and unsure as I am, but they don’t exude that. They have found a way to show the world that a tiny part of them believes they are deserving and they build, create, soar above the rest of us with little fear.

In all the years that I have been sitting behind this screen I never put much thought into my own words. I took the compliments with a grain of salt and refused to be changed by them. “People are just being nice to me.” I didn’t want there to be any apprearance of me shouting things to the crowds.

I am happy at the back of the bus, because for me it is enough just to be ON THE BUS.

I am more than content to sit in and among all of you who are writing, creating, designing and moving forward at light speed. I find great strength in yours and so I do what I have always done: I get on the bus, I smile at each one of you as I walk by and whisper (or shout) words of support, love and encouragement and I take my rightful seat, at the back.

However, this year has taken on a life of its own and I find myself in a daily struggle of wanting to shout to the masses and to keep my BIG MOUTH shut about the wonderful things that are happening because I’m not very good at tooting my own horn and honestly I really don’t like people who do it.

Becoming a mom has been a lesson in walking a very thin line with praise, bragging and extolling the awesome that is my sons. I find myself falling back into the practice I learned at the knee of a very successful mom and making less of what my children are doing, what they are capable of and how cute, smart or popular they are. I don’t want anyone to think I think TOO MUCH of them or my role as mom to them. My mom, for all her success, for all the things she accomplished and achieved never thought much of herself and would make less of it I think for fear that someone would think she was bragging or boasting.

Like my mom, I never want to get caught doing that.

It’s sad really, to hide my (small but not insignificant to me) success and now the successes of my sons behind a veil of “oh we’re not important” , “we’re just like everyone else, nothing to see here!” and  ”you don’t need to pay any attention to us, because we aren’t worthy of it….but YOU? You are!”

I find that now that I will be attending BlogHer, Bloggy Boot Camp and reading with the Amazing cast of Listen to Your Mother NYC, I want so much to be confidant in my worthiness to be in those spaces. To believe that I have achieved this and to feel like I belong there.

For you see, I am excited about this year.

I am so happy that I will be attending my VERY FIRST BLOG conference this May (Bloggy Boot Camp in Philadelphia)  and then when I go to BlogHer in August, I will be part of a panel with my good friends, Kathy, Lori and Mel called “My Blog No Longer Fits Me.” and I’m thrilled, but I don’t want to tell you about it.

As part of Just Be Enough, my goal is to always find the ENOUGH in the post, to write the end result and leave you with a  thought about me moving toward the acceptance of myself and the true meaning of being ENOUGH in this moment.

But today, I can’t.

I don’t know if I will ever be able to speak about myself and a success of my own without a catch in my voice , a lump in my throat or a disclaimer before I tell you that I am not , in any way, thinking that I deserve any praise.

 How about you reading? How do you feel about the good things that happen to you and do you share them freely and without guilt?

 

 We hope you will read, comment, link up,
and explore the stories of others who have linked.

 

What is your label | Just.Be.Enough. 

Have you heard? Next Monday, April 23rd, Be Enough Me is taking on the topic of labels with a special prompt inspired by Ashely Judd, called Change the Conversation.

It is time to look past the obvious for ourselves and our families.

We’re inviting posts from voices everywhere to share your labels and who you are beyond that. The focus is whatever you need it to be– from our lives as moms, dads, parents, spouses, professionals, survivors, athletes and more. We invite you to join us, to celebrate our strengths, to celebrate our diversity, to celebrate our voices and change the conversation.

Come back next Monday for the very special link-up. We cannot wait to take the conversation by storm with our voices.

 *Thanks for stopping by!!!!*

 If you are a member of BlogHer 

Please don’t forget to VOTE for my nominated piece for BlogHer’s VOICE OF THE YEAR about my struggle with infertility,

you can click right here to vote for BEING CARRIED. Thank you! xo

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58 Responses to Just Be Enough: At the Back of the Boasting Bus
  1. Adrienne
    April 16, 2012 | 9:13 pm

    Self deprecation always seems easier than acknowledging our strengths. I find this very of myself when it comes to writing or blogging. Especially when someone IRL ask me about it. I find myself embarrassed of my pursuit of writing and blogging. But, why?

    Great post! You deserve some praise. From yourself! <3

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:19 am

      first, thank you for such a heartfelt comment to me…it means so much to me.
      Second, that’s really what this is about, it’s about truly loving myself and seeing the good stuff there instead of trying to hide it. I’ll try harder to sing my own praises if you promise to do it too :)

    • Mayor Gia
      April 17, 2012 | 9:21 pm

      I agree! It’s easier to be self critical. I do that too much.

  2. Miss Marina Star
    April 16, 2012 | 9:26 pm

    Oh. Em. Gee.

    I would have never guessed that you didn’t ACTUALLY know how amazing you are. How you’re cheerleading means more to us because of how great we think you how, and how highly we think of you.

    I always thought of you DRIVING the bus I’m following in my car.

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:21 am

      Oh Miss Marina, I am sooooo not driving the bus, and you’re way up in the front of the bus anyway. But I am here, right in your corner…cheerleading for all of you I promise.

      your comment is exactly how I feel…that other people see me as this girl..and I can’t see myself that way. But in those very quiet moments in my life, I will remember these words and this love and hug you in my heart my friend. xoxo

  3. angela
    April 16, 2012 | 10:01 pm

    I know it’s hard for you, and I know it’s not a comfortable place. But I want you to slide into this like you would those gorgeous Nine West shoes. You have worked so very hard to get where you are, and you have a wonderful talent paired with a beautiful spirit. Own this year. Share it with the world. xoxo

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:17 am

      My friend, I’d much rather shout about YOUR year to the world. I don’t know how to be this girl and standing next to amazing writers, moms and friends like you makes it even harder.

      My world is brighter and better because of your friendship…you make this blog world the most comfortable place and i love you for doing that for me. Thank you sweetie, you have no idea what you mean to me!!!! xoxo

  4. Galit Breen
    April 16, 2012 | 11:59 pm

    What a stunning, thoughtful, transparent post about -wait for it- you.

    Love.

    xo

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:14 am

      oooh, well there was my first tear about this. I wonder, should I have even posted this? But thank you for reading it, for writing to me, for always being the kind of person, mom, writer and friend I want to be.
      xoxo

  5. Lori Lavender Luz
    April 17, 2012 | 12:20 am

    Let me toot your horn….WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOT!

    I get to sit on a panel with the awesome Kir!!

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:13 am

      you are an amazing person, an amazing friend and someone I am humbled to know. I get to SIT with YOU…..but that is one bus ride I’d take again and again, just to sit next to you. xoxoxo

  6. Alison@Mama Wants This
    April 17, 2012 | 12:44 am

    I love that you’re modest and humble and don’t want to brag (because who likes a braggart, really?), but I hope you’re sitting there, and know that you ARE lovely and doing well and should be basking in the successes, small or big. That you deserve them. xo

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:12 am

      I don’t know if it’s humbled or just low self esteem, but whatever it is, thank you for being an inspration to me. For showing me “how” and for always being so good to me. I feel so lucky to be “on your bus” xo

  7. Kimberly
    April 17, 2012 | 1:47 am

    I am the same way. I have such a difficult time admitting that I have ever succeeded in anything. And if a compliment is ever given? I immediately dismiss it, not knowing how to accept it.

    I want you to know that you deserve all of these wonderful things for yourself. You have done an amazing job and you have earned all of this. xo

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:11 am

      Well I would be the first to sing your praises, I look at you and see so much success and drive to do things. You are really an inspriration to me. Thank you for saying all the nice stuff, I don’t think I deserve it, but it means a lot coming from yuo sweetie. xo

  8. Jessica
    April 17, 2012 | 10:34 am

    I am proud of you for everything you have done and are going to do this year.

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 10:57 am

      I know you are and it means the world to me, mostly because I look at you and see some much success! xo

  9. Susi
    April 17, 2012 | 11:08 am

    Kir, these words hit home for me so completely. I can’t believe you feel this way, to me you always seem so confident and outgoing. In a way it’s comforting to know that you, a woman I admire greatly has these same feelings. After all, we are all human. Thanks you for sharing this and I wish you all the luck and confidence with your endeavors. You deserve it!!! :)

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:29 am

      Oh Susi, it’s feeling good to let it out, to come to terms with it and to hear from other women that they feel the same way. In many ways, I am just a little girl who wants everyone to like her, who doesn’t think much of herself…but these comments are going to keep me very warm on those cold days when I can’t seem to find “myself”

      thank you xo

  10. By Word of Mouth Musings
    April 17, 2012 | 11:16 am

    Sweet soul sister who lives there inside my head …
    Recently I attended a birthday party with a group of twelve women. The birthday girl, very spiritual and comfortable in her walk with God … went around the room and gave everyone a word she felt described them. She looked at me and said – you are ‘worthy’, you must believe that.
    If only I could …

    • kir
      April 17, 2012 | 11:27 am

      OH Nicole…THIS COMMENT may have just changed my world today. WOW. How could YOU not think you’re worthy?? You of the SHEROES who live in my world, you of the homeschooling and the love and the muses??? You of the love, support and hugs that heal me even from inside this screen.

      You are worthy and I am so lucky and humbled to be in your world.

      thank you for writing this to me…thank you for looking inside me. xoxox

  11. JDaniel4's Mom
    April 17, 2012 | 2:34 pm

    I love this post and the way it has touched everyone one of you commenters hearts! Well done!

  12. Julia
    April 17, 2012 | 2:42 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing these inner thoughts. I struggle with this too, yet find it so easy to be a cheerleader to others. And you are so right, this Mommy thing puts it all in a new light as well. Sharing this part of yourself here is something you should be proud of, as well as all of your other accomplishments.

  13. Frelle
    April 17, 2012 | 3:31 pm

    Thank you for verbalizing your feelings here, it was very brave of you. I understand how you feel because its how I feel too. Just grateful to be in the company I am. *HUG*

    You are a great writer, one that I read and really “get”, and am so blessed to be in community with you.

  14. Susannah
    April 17, 2012 | 4:06 pm

    I am the exact same way. I am one to compliment and be super proud of another person’s achievements, but I just don’t think that way about myself. I just discovered your blog, and I think it is excellent. It is definitely something you should be proud of. Go ahead, brag a little. It’ll do you good!

  15. Missy | Literal Mom
    April 17, 2012 | 4:11 pm

    Ahhh, yes. I do understand this completely. But YOU? Are so amazing. How can I accurately say you are AWESOME but I understand how you don’t FEEL awesome? I think it’s because I kind of feel the exact same way. What a great, thought-provoking post.

  16. Kimberly
    April 17, 2012 | 6:17 pm

    You and me? Totally the same person.
    I’ve never had that in me. I always cheered on everyone else…but what about me?
    Know that I genuinely love you and your writing is just breathtaking.
    You are wonderful and I hope that one day you will see what I see…a pair of high heels…kidding…you’re beautiful self all over these words. xoxo

  17. Kimberly at Rubber Chicken Madness
    April 17, 2012 | 9:23 pm

    You’re right…it’s hard for me to see that you can’t see the amazing-ness of you…so allow me to frame it just a bit differently…

    You may just be “on the bus”…and not the tour director or the driver, but you’re the amazing stranger I lucked out to “sit” next to on a recent blogging bus ride.

    A woman whose relatively quiet, but yet supremely strong and loving, point of view absolutely captured me.

    So, never underestimate the influence you have as a passenger on this bus. Your voice, your perspective, shines.

  18. Sisterhood of the Sensible Moms
    April 17, 2012 | 10:29 pm

    That is all so fabulously exciting. What a year and you are ready for all of it. Really. And knowing yourself well is strength, not bragging. Great post. So excited for you, Erin

  19. jamieywrites
    April 18, 2012 | 1:39 am

    This is a great post! I think by embracing and acknowledging your strengths is important. It’s just merely being grateful for who you are.

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 1:15 pm

      thank you so much, for coming over and for reminding me that it’s important to think nice things about yourself once in a while…it is grateful and not boasting. thank you for that .

  20. Katie @ Chicken Noodle Gravy
    April 18, 2012 | 10:35 am

    Kir, I’m the exact same way! I’m the number one cheerleader and supporter of my friends. I look to them and see all of their wonderful accomplishments and feel nothing but pride. But I remain unimpressed by my own successes. I don’t think I’ll ever completely be proud of myself…and I’m not sure how to change that.

    • kir
      April 18, 2012 | 2:12 pm

      but you…you shouldn’t be. You are amazing and incredibly inspiring. You push me to think and feel and write…so I think you should feel proud of yourself just because you teach me to be BETTER in every way. That is your accomplisment, making us feel like we are lucky to know you. xo

  21. christina
    April 18, 2012 | 11:08 am

    most of my life was lived feeling guilty… over things i shouldn’t have even been thinking about let alone feeling guilty about. i was always in the back of the bus, always the wallflower, always the shoulder to lean on, always the cheerleader. and then something inside me just clicked (in 1999) and i’ve since let all that above there go and started living for me, being proud of me and mine. it’s so much more … peaceful this way IMO.

    • kir
      April 18, 2012 | 2:10 pm

      I am going to start praying for my epiphany, for my CLICK…like you had. Congratulations on that…for living in your skin and knowing you are worthy.

      I loved this comment Christina…thank you.

  22. Miranda
    April 18, 2012 | 1:38 pm

    It’s so much easier to go to the back of the bus because then the spotlight isn’t on you….and spotlights are bad because if people look long enough, then they can see the flaws under that horribly harsh light. But accepting praise, or being proud enough to share your accomplishments, can definitely be one of those ‘easier said than done’ things. Congrats on your success!

    • kir
      April 18, 2012 | 2:05 pm

      Hi and thank you for coming over. I’m having a really hard time replying to these comments, because I don’t know how to express how much they mean to me and how I want so desperately to be worthy of the small successes. Please know that you coming over and leaving me these words means the world to me.

  23. Stacey
    April 18, 2012 | 2:09 pm

    Oh my gosh!! I’m so excited for you! I don’t think of it as bragging at all. Imagine you were friends with someone and she was doing something amazing…and didn’t tell you about it. You’d be hurt, right? Your family, friends, and readers would feel the same way if you didn’t share your big news (and it is BIG!). You can sit wherever you want, just be sure you listen to the people cheering you on, because it IS genuine and you ARE awesome. Congrats again!

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 1:06 pm

      You’re right! I’d be so hurt if my good close friends didn’t tell me, but I hate telling. I hate trying to make less of it for the sake of my pride (and my low self esteem) Your words to me are just so beautiful….thank you for changing me with them.

  24. Jamie
    April 18, 2012 | 4:16 pm

    I know this was hard for you. But I hope that you can read it and stick your chest out. I admire the ability in people to be proud of themselves. Yes, there is a difference in bragging and boasting. But being proud of yourself is a huge accomplishment and a lesson we need to teach our children. YOU have a lot to be proud of!

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 1:03 pm

      one of the hardest posts to write, even harder than infertility.

      but I wrote it for Gio and Jacob as a promise from me that I will always praise them, always think they are good and special and make sure they know it. You are so right about that. Me being comforatable with it isn’t as important as teaching them to be proud of themselves (and me sometimes too :) xoxoo

  25. Louise Ducote
    April 18, 2012 | 5:59 pm

    I love that you’re focusing on excellent content rather than on self-marketing and that good things are coming to you; congratulations! It sounds like you’ll have a fun summer, and I can’t wait to hear about it.

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 1:01 pm

      I don’t even know how to self market…self market what??? me? ummm, no. :)

      but thank you for this, your words made a difference today. :)

  26. Michelle Longo
    April 18, 2012 | 9:03 pm

    I feel a lot like you a lot of the time. I’m always surprised when I hear (or read) good writers say stuff like this – I don’t get it. You deserve whatever praise you’re getting, certainly on the writing. But I suppose some would say the same about me (I hope so anyway).

    I hope I get to meet you at BlogHer!

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 12:58 pm

      I can’t wait to meet you at BlogHer, please come find me and hug me…ok?

      you make the blog world a little brighter for me.

  27. Jenn
    April 19, 2012 | 8:05 am

    I think we focus so much more on the negative (seems easier) than we do the positive (really hard). I’ve noticed women, do this thing… and me too. For example, when someone says “Oh you look great today I love that shirt!” somehow I end up saying “Oh well, yeah it was only $1.50 at Goodwill.” or “Yeah, I forgot to do laundry so this is all I had in the closet.” It’s a weird phenomenon. But I will toot your horn for you, you’re fabulous and I’m excited for all of your upcoming opportunities!!!

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 12:54 pm

      I do that too…I do. “Oh this old thing?” so I know exactly how you feel. Thank you for this beautiful comment…and for your tooting…I hear it from here. xoxo

  28. Abby
    April 19, 2012 | 9:19 am

    My dream for you is that you learn how to DRIVE the bus. Because you deserve it!!! :)

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 11:17 am

      oh…oh. Thank you. (I don’t even know how to answer…see? I’m a mess when someone tries to compliment me) but thank you for this. I’d rather ride shotgun…but your words made a difference and I can’t thank you enough for that.

  29. Kelly
    April 19, 2012 | 9:24 am

    My dear sweet Kir, you friend most defintely have a seat on the bus. In fact, it is held especially for you with a shiny plaque which bears your name.

    You have worked so incredibly hard for your achievements this past year. You should be proud (as we know you are) and share that with your head high, shoulders back and rocking in those beautiful high heels, WITHOUT the guilt of feeling as you are bragging.

    Pshhh. When bragging becomes annoying is when the person doing it has no basis to back it up.

    You will be able to brag for years to come.

    So incredibly proud of you!
    AND I CANNOT WAIT TO MEET YOU AT BLOGHER!!!

    xoxo

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 11:15 am

      oh YOU…you who will make me cry and weep with gratitude that you are in my life, that I even KNOW you…

      I have a HUG for you that I cannot wait to give yu at BlogHer, I am so looking forward to being able to just share a quiet space with you for a little while. xoxoxo

  30. jamie
    April 19, 2012 | 11:00 am

    Cool for you. It is hard to “brag” but think of it as sharing great news…I had a father that bragged on me — to much. I love him dearly, but I have a terrible time bragging on my children to others. Hopefully, I remember to praise them just lots though.

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 11:13 am

      Hi and thank you for coming over. This is something I am trying to do…bragging about myself is one thing but I truly have to sing the praises of my amazing sons more often, so they know how special they are, even if they are only special to me. :)

  31. Kristin
    April 19, 2012 | 1:11 pm

    You must be doing something right – you put yourself out there! I’m still getting to that point. I don’t think bragging and confidence need to be tied. Knowing you have something to offer is generous, not snobbish.

    Enjoy it!

    • kir
      April 19, 2012 | 1:17 pm

      well that is one way of putting it, :)

      and you saying “knowing you have something to offer is generous” ..that’s brilliant,and it’s something I never thought about. Thank you for allowing me to look at it another way.

  32. Jackie
    April 19, 2012 | 4:16 pm

    I have noticed that you seem to be everywhere Kir, and I mean that in a good way! Most of the blogs I frequent or find in hops, I often see your familiar icon, and I have thought, “Wow, you are such a supportive person!”
    I do believe that what you put out into the world comes back, and these successes are evidence of this Kir! Congrats and continued successes, as you so deserve them!

  33. Kimberly S. (Sperk*)
    April 20, 2012 | 5:20 pm

    I love all of your posts, but recently one in particular stood out to me–the Ultimate Blog Bash. It was the first time I saw your accomplishments in one place and it was impactful and inspiring, not boastful or arrogant. You are brave for writing this post and it has me exploring my own issues with success. Thank you. Congratulations on your fabulous year.

  34. Mel
    April 24, 2012 | 8:29 pm

    My husband ‘jokes’ with me that I wake up feeling guilty in the morning. These are fantastic accomplishments and you should be proud. Your biggest accomplishment I see in this post? You giving yourself the credit you deserve. GOOD FOR YOU!!! Keep it up!

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