Well, this punched me in the face this morning. I think it showed up in my 30 Days of Hustle group, but I’ll be damned if I can go back and find it now, so maybe it was sent to me from above. Who knows. If you want to read it on the Bedlam Magazine website, click here. Actually, click there anyway, cause it’s a nice place to go. I had to save it here so I can go back to it. 🙂 Powerful schtuff. Melissa Hawks, you have a new fan.
I delete you. Yes.
All days. Yet. Here you are. Back.
In my inbox. Cuss.
Every single day I swipe left. I need the space. I’m notorious for sending pictures, random singing videos, and novel length paragraphs via text message. This means I have to let go on a daily basis. I am a ruthless deleter of iMessages. Especially with men. Girlfriend, I will keep you in my inbox forever, or at least until I run out of storage. But, dudes, there’s a good chance that at any given lull in our conversation, you’ve been wiped from my memory.
We all do it. This is the easy road out when you don’t want to deal with someone. The way their name makes you feel every time you open your messages and see it there, hanging out towards the top. It mocks you. So, we delete them. We say, “you no longer exist in my world.” At least for the moment. On this screen. In this microcosm of a story in which we force ourselves to live, we kill off their character. Highlight. Little red x. Next, please.
Theoretically, this is how we deal. But, let’s be real. Letting go is something with which we do fierce battle, especially in this technological world. The digital mountain of collected content we accrue when connecting with another human is difficult to wrap our minds around. Even if our interaction is brief, erasing that connection when a thing is done can be hard.
When it’s time to move forward. When you’ve had enough. It can be almost physically painful.
For me, it feels impossible sometimes. I rarely use the block feature whether on my iPhone or on a social media platform. I tell myself it’s because I believe in giving people grace, but there are moments when I wonder if it’s because I have such a hard time letting go. I think, “but what if they change??” I believe in second chances. I’ve needed about a million of them myself. But there are moments when walking away or saying goodbye is about a second chance for both you and the other person. A second chance without the other person in it.
Swipe left. Delete. Move forward.
I did this recently. There were two reasons. The first was a practical one. I was running out of storage. I had to do it. It was time. The second was much more ephemeral and hard to tack down. My eyes had been opened to the schism between what I was investing in a particular conversation and the reality of it. I also am learning about what it means to choose me so I can find wholeness. If I’m ever going to have healthy relationships, this is an important factor – pursuing healing. This was an ugly and hard choice.
In an atypical manner, I had allowed months worth of iMessages to accumulate with someone. That one conversation was taking up an entire GB of memory. It held links, surprise, laughter, anger, “oh, hey’s” and even a meme or fifty. It was a Someday iMessage. A hope for things that might be.
Reality check: iMessages aren’t a good container for holding Somedays. They are dry and a little empty. They don’t hold your face or speak into your eyes. They can’t wrap their arms around you with their promises. Typed black letters in a bright blue box that at times turns that sketch shade of green because service isn’t available is not the place to entrust your Someday.
And can I tell you, that you are worth more?
When you finally come to that understanding. When realization hits you like it did poor Johnny Football that he was drafted to Cleveland. When you see the reality of your situation instead of the glittering dream you want it to be. Don’t be afraid to swipe left. Be warned. As soon as you do, (the actual moment you do) that iMessage will pop back up. But guess what, you have a choice.And you can choose to just delete that sucker without responding or even block. Yep. Do it.
There will be other steps you need to take too. Messages aren’t the only thing you have saved in that infernal machine of yours. Holding on to something no matter how tiny it is only tethers you to that thing or memory (2.2 MB image, I’m looking at you). If you’re really going to live the story you were created for, you can’t carry all of that into your next chapter.
It’s time. Walk forward.
One of my professors from grad school said, “Let go or be dragged.” This is reality. There are moments in life when you must relinquish your hold on certain things and events and people. If you don’t you will be chained to the chaos of them forever; because of your brokenness or theirs. Whatever the reason may be, it will suck in the moment. Let go. It’s worth it. It will set you free.
Be brave. Be YOU. Quit walking on eggshells like you have been, afraid of what might not be or might not happen. Go do what you were created to do and be who you were created to be. Be brilliant. Pursue wholeness and heal. Shine. And keep swiping left. Someday knows where to find you. And if one day, it has the courage to hold your face in its hands and speak into your eyes, you’ll know whether or not it gets a second chance. We all deserve at least one, sometimes it’s just not the one we imagined.”