Today I hurt…

Today I hurt
It’s a different kind of pain, one that is deep-seated and long-lasting
That tells of years of prayers and dreams lost

I once worked so hard to achieve these dreams
I poured every single part of me, and then more, into making them real
Always putting others first, the way I thought that it should be

Then I slowly came to realise, that when I give of my all
I have nothing left for me
And that you cannot give from an empty pail

That pail doesn’t get refilled when those you love, don’t care
That pail becomes rusty and battered if you don’t take care of it
For nobody else will

So I started to take care of me
I gave them choices and said clearly that this is what I need
They ignored my cry and continued to take without love or respect

I tried harder still to meet their every need
Torn in every direction, never approved of, never enough
I cried again, please, please listen to me!

They continued to take
One left, to get what they wanted and to force me to comply
With their need to control every aspect of my life, to keep me in my self-inflicted prison

The other continued to lock me in, to put me down
Nothing that I did was ever enough, I gave and I gave and I gave
They continued to take

Finally, I said enough, I can’t give any more
I need your respect; I need you to listen to me
They refused and I warned them over and over again

They didn’t believe, for how many times before have I said enough
But continued to give, to pour from an empty pail
To give and to give and to give

I warned again that this time, enough was enough
That I had reached my point of no return
That they would be burning bridges, I had no more left to give

One lit the match and tossed it at me and wondered why
I didn’t rush in and expend my every last breath putting out the fire
This time, I let it burn. Remember, I have nothing left to give!

The other then returns
Their selfishness abounds
They use that first burned bridge as excuse as to why I am not enough for them

They have no idea of the years, and years, and years of pain and torment
That came before, of the warnings given
Even that in my allowing one bridge to burn I was still trying to protect the other

The second lights the match
It’s not been tossed in yet, but soon
It’s being waved as a threat right now

They should learn from the first
I have reached my end point, there is nothing left to give
I will not accept such selfishness anymore

I will not give, and give and give
I have to take care of me
I literally don’t have a choice for my every breath is a fight

How sad, that in my time of need those I love have hurt me the most
That those who should put me first, are all about themselves
Their needs, their wants, their desires

All at my expense
How dare I take care of me?
How dare I try to repair my pail?

How dare I ask for help from those that help me patch my pail?
Those that help me slowly, oh so slowly, start to fill my pail
How dare I not do everything to stop them toss that match?

I am no longer defined by how others see me
I am defined by how I see me
I am strong, I am a survivor; if bridges have to be burned so be it

I will not allow my fear of being judged by those that only know part of a whole, who have not lived my life,
Who were not there when I reached out for help, but rather pushed me back down
Stop me from finally taking care of me

I will no longer place all others before myself
To love others, I have finally learned that first
I have to love myself

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