Amount to You!  

I have heard the phrase “you/he/she won’t amount to much” more than once in my life. I know that is a strange expression, but it comes from an interesting place. It is woven into the stories of people who went on to do unique and hugely impactful things in the world.    

The first time that phrase was said in a person’s life, they might not even have been able to process it. In fact, it can start even before or immediately after someone is born. It might appear later when a child does not conform in some way to school or some other social rule.   

 If you look into the lives of the people we support as adults, you will find that phrase in their story. If you look at the life of a child trying to cope with trauma, you will find it in their story.  Maybe that phrase passed someone’s lips in your own life or the lives of someone you love.  

I still remember first grade. I went from a big family where I had lots of personal attention to a small classroom packed with kids—over 50 children. I really struggled to figure out this environment. My sister tells a similar story of her entrance to school life. My approach was different than hers. I thought, “I’ll show them!” Her story includes some panic and worry. Fast-forward, and here we are—I lead KenCrest, and she repairs appliances. We both succeeded.  

 If you asked me to read a technical manual to repair a fridge, I would panic (and call my sister).  If you asked my sister to prepare for a board meeting, she would ask where you left your marbles (and she would call me).  

We all need to live up to our giftedness. We need to find the path that will allow us to do the most good for the world. Then, we need to do that good with joy and commitment.   

I just finished re-reading our recent magazine, Possibilities. Each time I read it. I come away with another thought. I give you a link here to check it out. Read the story about how people with disabilities are doing their part to end childhood hunger. Since 2011, KenCrest’s Community-Based Services program has partnered with Operation 143 to deliver nonperishable food to children facing food insecurity in Pennsylvania. They deliver food bags filled with nonperishable food items, like tuna, fruit cups, SpaghettiOs, granola bars, cereal, etc., enough to feed students from Friday night into Sunday.  

This is a group of people who are amounting to something.  Let’s avoid any reference to potential—other than to expect great things.