My brother, who is one of my favorite people ever, once said that taken separately, “fuck it” is just a couple of words, but run them together and they become a philosophy. FuckIt is not the fuck it you’ll find in Urban Dictionary. It has nothing to do with giving up or blowing something off. FuckIt is what lets you hit a dude twice your size at full speed. It wins wars and glory. It can also get you killed.
My brother is nothing if not wise, at least in the ways of FuckIt. Thanks to our dad (a veritable guru of FuckIt) it’s how we learned to engage the world. My brother was just clever enough to name it. Bastard.
Last Sunday, I posted a picture of myself sitting in a leather chair. In it, I am nude and very alert, ostensibly doing something that I love. The response to that picture was typical of the Sinful Sunday community – gracious, supportive and lovely in every way. The fact that I even considered posting it was due in large part to the warmth of the people who participate in that meme.
Though I did several versions of that image, the one that I finally posted is nearly untouched (save for cropping out half the room). It’s just me in the chair with the lighting from the window – the best I could do with my iPhone.
The fact that the image is unfiltered gave me pause as I was preparing the post. Filters are like veils and I like them – they reveal as much as they obscure. They’re a little bit like clothing in a way. Going without one for that post was oddly unsettling. It made me feel even more exposed than the nudity did. Ultimately though, I’m glad I used that one and not the filtered option. It made pressing publish a little harder to do.
That’s how FuckIt works for me. It’s the weight on the scale between action and inaction, comfort and risk. It pushes me through hesitation to the place where I truly commit.
Earlier this week, I got an email from a very good friend who was very supportive about the post. In her email, she mentioned something that made me think. She observed that while I seem comfortable with exhibitionism, she prefers to remain more guarded. As a (perhaps surprisingly) guarded person, I totally understand this, especially given that what drove me to post that image wasn’t exhibitionism (though I can see that being a motive at some point). What drove me was the impulse to push my own boundaries. I’m a FuckIt junkie. I like making myself uncomfortable so I can push myself through it.
You can see that tendency in my writing. As my boundaries have shifted, (and continue to shift) my posts have become more personal and my stories more reflective of curiosities and concerns. I can feel a boundary coming because it either turns me on, or gives me a sharp kick in the gut. That’s when I have to decide whether or not to push myself through it. And I have to admit that I love doing it – nudging up to no just before saying yes, but only if yes is the right answer. FuckIt is about action and choice. It’s the risk I choose for myself.
That’s because FuckIt only works if you weigh your odds. Dark alleys in bad neighborhoods aren’t the best place to say FuckIt, just as FuckIt! I’ll lie and have that affair! is not a responsible relationship choice. It all goes back to my brother’s point about FuckIt being equal parts glory and getting people killed.
But going back to Sunday’s post…. Though I’m selectively open on this blog, I’m actually a pretty private person. While I reveal a great deal of myself here, I do so within the boundaries I set (or push) for myself. That Sinful Sunday was a push, one I was able to do because I realized that, if you strip away everything, it’s just a picture of me in a chair. On a global scale, it’s just not that big a deal.
Coming to that conclusion made me feel calm when I hit publish. It gave me a sense of grounded satisfaction. That’s what a well-chosen FuckIt gives me – the satisfaction of bumping up against discomfort and of rolling on through it. That feels really good. In the end, it’s that satisfaction that I crave in all aspects of my life. Saying FuckIt is always a risk, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take, provided there’s a lake to land in when I jump off the cliff.