This piece is for the people who have always lived with their hands, minds, and hearts wide open. The ones who learned, young, that it was better to care and be broken than always wonder what could have been. This is for the girls who gave their hearts away when they were seventeen; for the boys that weren’t afraid to hold hands and scribble notes on crumpled papers to pass to their girlfriends in freshman year math class.
This is for the people who, despite what the world said, weren’t scared of loving, being loved.
This is for you—and maybe for me, too. This is for all of us, because selfless, uninhibited love was inherent within each of us at some point.
I want you to know that I see you, giver.
I see the way you’ve never been afraid to say what’s on your heart, to reach out to the person standing next to you, to be the one who leans in for the kiss first. I see the way you were the only loyal friend in a group of too quick to jump to the next fad, next thing. Or how you showed up, time and time again, expecting nothing in return.
You are the one who was never afraid to try again, to take a chance, to see what would happen if you didn’t give up and instead decided to stay.
You’ve gone to battle for people who didn’t care for you; you’ve loved only to be left in loss.
Seasons and relationships came and went. But still, you kept fighting for your loved ones. You kept answering the phone on the first ring. You kept putting your needs aside because it was far more important to be reliable than it was to be selfish.
And people took advantage of that.
Now you feel like there’s nothing left to give. Like you’ve handed out all the best pieces of yourself to those who couldn’t care less. You feel unsatisfied and empty. Maybe even bitter, too.
You’re the one who was always giving, always caring. But what about you? What about the moments you need love and support? What about the things you crave—the shoulder to cry on, the body to fall into, the embrace to offer solace and support?
Why is it that you’re always expected to be strong, to have more, to keep going?
Who fights for you? Who loves you just as unselfishly, and has the fire and faith to match?
I don’t have the answers; I wish I did. I wish I could promise you that your actions would be reciprocated, that people would give you all the tenacity and passion you give to them. I wish I could promise that at the end of the day, you will have the strength to keep going. And that the people who love you will see what you need and give it to you.
But sometimes it doesn’t happen that way.
Yet, you can’t give up.
You were hard-wired this way for a reason. Perhaps for a purpose you’ve tried to ignore, or maybe even for one that’s still unknown. No, you’re not meant to be a doormat or punching bag. But you’re not meant to hide the purest parts of yourself, either.
You give, you care, you love—that’s how you’ve always been. It’s not something to be angry or ashamed of. It’s not something to fight.
Rather than allowing yourself to be broken, try to fill your heart with enough spirit that you can find your feet again. Don’t let the people who mistreat you define you, but instead create courage and confidence in your heart that propels you forward, that brushes you off after you fall.
You deserve healing, too, giver. But sometimes the only one you can receive that healing from is yourself.
But you are strong, stronger than you realize. And all that love and selfishness you’ve been pouring out can be returned to yourself, too, sometimes. It’s not wrong to be the way you are.
But don’t forget to be that way to your own heart.
Featured Image Credit: fotografierende