Always, on my life’s journey,
For as long as I can remember,
The “other” has assigned me a role.

The consummate friend.
The submissive woman.
The good Christian.
The sacrificing mom.
The helpful neighbor.

The one to take the blame.
The one to come to the rescue.

I became all of these things.
I fulfilled all of these roles.
Fully. Loyally. Wholeheartedly.

Whatever was reflected,
In the other’s mirror,
I fashioned myself into.

Whatever he needed me to be,
I became.

My empathy was my drug
Driving me to chronic use

The toxic animals
Surrounding me
Drawn to my scent

Indifferent parasites
Hungry and roaming–

A narcissist’s playground

I stifled my inner truths
Until the pain was unbearable
Every wound a message
An appeal to listen

My inner goddess of power
Wailing within
For freedom

Mother-fucking autonomy.

But I was too busy singing my song of love,
Throwing my best parts to the wolves.

I vow. Never again.

Save yourself this time.
Take responsibility for yourself.

I did.

And I will not climb in a box
So the “other” feels more comfortable–
With me.

I will not hide my pain.
I will not hide my power.

I will be me. Fully. Loyally.
Wholeheartedly. Me.

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