A guest post from Rob, a dear friend and lover of Kyle’s. A tattoo manifesto.
YES AND is a mantra for embracing the now and creating the future; for moving deeper into life; for being an active participant; for flowing with what the universe has to show you and reaching out to join it.
YES can be enthusiasm: YES! I want this! I love this! This is perfect.
YES can be acceptance: yes. This is happening. This is now. This is part of everything. This is.
AND can be the next step. The moving forward.
AND can be adding on, expanding. More. Deeper.
It’s how we move through the world, step by step, first with a YES, and then following it up with AND. Again and again, until we get to where we are, and find ourselves saying again, YES AND.
Kyle talks about the “abundance of the universe”. Trusting that your needs will be met, to not be shy about visualizing what you want, that there is enough for everyone. There is enough love and energy and positivity in the world that everyone can have the amazing life they want (which, turns out, is the same as the magical life we each deserve). Just as a mother’s love is limitless, the universe has enough starlight and mystery to fuel each and every one of our dreams and hopes and loves.
I first heard Kyle talk about YES AND while reading Bossypants by Tina Fey. (I JUST finished reading it myself. It’s great!) She talks about how “Yes, And” is a “rule of improv” that asks performers to agree with the situation and add something to it. “Start with a YES and see where that takes you.”
Saying YES has taken Kyle everywhere he has ever gone, and in those places he found us and inspired us to be part of his AND. And he carries us with him just as we carry him with us.
While in New Zealand, Kyle and Weston were planning on getting YES AND tattoos; a first step in a campaign to come back to the State and convince everyone else to get the same tattoo. Weston was the first to get his. Much like the ones I got, Weston’s tattoos are on his feet.
Since the Nina has gone missing, I’ve been having many conversations with friends who are close to Kyle. One of those conversations took place when I drove to the Oregon coast to hike Saddle Mountain with Kat and Dan one day. (side note: Dan is the wonderfully sincere man who introduced me to Kyle at a 4th of July camping getaway, and Kat is one of Kyle’s absolute best friends who I had the pleasure of meeting for the first time at a rundown Mexican restaurant in Crescent City, CA when I drove to pick them up at the end of their impromptu Oregon coast bike trip adventure. Needless to say, a shining example of the beautiful people Kyle attracts.) As we hiked we told some of our favorite stories about Kyle and shared a giant bag of wine (‘cause I mean, duh, right?). At the top of the mountain, after reading some Mary Oliver out loud, watching the ocean and hoopin and hollerin, I was sharing Kyle’s thoughts on YES AND and talking about Weston’s tattoo.
By the time we got back to the car it was decided we would call our (and Kyle’s) friend Kati to set up a tattoo appointment. And, as these things go, Kati had been talking to Weston while we were out hiking. In fact they were talking about his YES AND tattoo. What was obvious, was now becoming inevitable.
I’m now part of a community of excited, positive, involved, happy, present, self-determining people dedicated to commit to Kyle’s message of saying YES to living a true life AND doing something with it.
With this in mind, and the Nina still not found, I am working at saying YES, this is happening, AND I know in my heart Kyle will be safe.
YES there is sadness and confusion AND there is love and comfort.
YES there is joy and laughter AND there is loss and longing.
YES there is me AND there is us.
YES there is us AND there is we.
YES there is this AND there is this.
YES there is love AND there is love.