(I’m almost caught up on my Reverb posts! And I have to say – really enjoying the prompts more than I thought I would.)
This year I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that letting go and giving up are not the same thing if you are stronger for the absence of the thing let go. For a long time I have confused the two, hanging onto non-supportive relationships and organizations because I “don’t want to be a quitter” or because I am afraid of being perceived as failing or “losing” an argument.
This year I gave up two very significant political relationships on opposite sides of the political spectrum. Back in the summer, I gave up my intention to run for higher leadership in my union, and as of October I gave up my membership in the Resist! Collective which I helped found thirteen years ago. These have both been difficult and painful decisions to make, given the constancy of both organizations in my life for a long time, but when it came right down to it the frustration of staying in was worse than that of leaving.
Really, both decisions came down to a strengthening in myself – that I really *do* have something to offer, that I really am a hard-working and decent person, and that I don’t want to waste that playing silly games or justifying and re-justifying my existence. Rather, I’d like to be focused on the positive offerings of the world and to operate from where I am truly welcome rather than having to live in continual apology and fending off the negativity of attack politics.
I haven’t let go of my political beliefs, my shop stewarding, my community involvements or my affinity for anarchist media providers… But I have decided to let go of things that aren’t serving me or my activism so well anymore in order that I can be better energized to face what is sure to be a challenging future for our planet (and our class).