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“No” is a complete sentence

I took a trip for work right before Christmas. I had a lot to do when I got home. But while I was gone, my husband made plans for us to do some social stuff on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Y’all, I was done. Done.

Everything went wrong

The work trip did not go as planned. I run a ministry, Loveline, that helps women in immediate crisis situations. I also run a home for pregnant moms who have nowhere else to go.

We had a minor crisis to overcome when my staff arrived and I wasn’t even there yet.

The week before I was pretty bogged down in another crisis with a client who was battling some harassment that sent her spiraling into suicidal ideation. Thankfully we got her stabilized.

And then we took in another pregnant momma who was homeless and living in a park for a week because baby’s daddy had booted her out. Preparations had to be made to give her the confident “yes” she needed to feel secure.

On top of this, a really special friend passed away.

Boiling over

It was a lot to handle and I was feeling all the things. I couldn’t put my finger on exactly what activated me, which was an indication that I had boiled over. There was no more containing it. I was beyond capacity at this point.

I wanted peace. I wanted goodwill. I wanted solitude – somewhat. I mean, I wanted my family (my husband and daughter) but no one else. I needed to decompress with no expectations and no frills and no judgment.


My husband got to witness a mom meltdown two days before Christmas Eve. It was a rare occurrence. It’s like spotting a bald eagle or seeing the Loch Ness monster. I was in the bath trying to decompress (I affectionately call it my baptismal – don’t come at me all religious like either) when suddenly it hit me. All of it.


I began to cry. I couldn’t stop. I didn’t want to stop.

Saying “no” to it all

My precious, tender hearted husband (he’s a pastor, y’all, God loves me so much) listened between my heaves as I told him I didn’t want to have any social commitments. I was overwhelmed. I was never even whelmed. Just went right on to over.

He cancelled. He respected this boundary that I guiltily constructed in a torrential downpour of tears. And he cancelled.

And he took me on a staycation. We went to a hotel and stayed until Christmas Eve with no pressure. No expectations. No considerations. No obligations.

Do it. Just say no every once in a while. It makes your yes mean so much more.

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