It was about a year ago I started getting rid of clothes. It was the beginning of my discipline of saying “no”, “no thank you”, “no way”, and the occasional “hell no!”. It was a conscious decision to say no to what was mediocre in order to say yes to what was best. After getting rid of 50+ pieces of clothing, my no muscle got a little stronger. I have said no to job opportunities, to friends, to my tax man, to family, roommate possibilities, all out of the search and desire for what is best.
Last night I said no to a relationship. We had been dating about two months. He was behind my trip to Florida. He was a surprising, exciting, interesting person that certainly brought a great deal of good into my life, but by the end, it was crazy making. It was like wearing a hooded sweatshirt backward on a brisk morning. There was some real warmth provided, but the fact that the hood covered my face and kept me blind meant that I needed to take off that sweatshirt. I’m sad, and maybe a bit chilly too. The warmth was real, and I miss it.
Letting it go is hard. A conversation that ends with two disappointed people that wish things were different super sucks. It is in this I am comforted by some of what I learned and continue to learn from this project: a solid, well thought out, “no”, provides an empty space for a yes that is coming. It is the living in faith that good comes from this stuff, that beauty comes from ashes, that resurrection comes from death, that holds me today.