I see you sit in stunned silence
as the window of awareness cracks open
I see your expression shift
as the realization slowly
moves, realigns
and settles into your body

I see you a little off-center
confused and shaken
wondering what the hell?
how could this be true?
I see you waking up
starting to see what I see in you

I see you trying
I see you scrambling
I see you giving
and giving and giving
as you struggle to be seen,
to matter, to belong

Somewhere along the way
you learned to believe
that over-giving
leads to belonging
that selflessness
leads to connection

Those beliefs are false
they are hurting you
and keeping the world
from knowing you
from seeing you
from hearing your voice

I see you building
brick walls for alcohol
and assholes
yet no boundaries at all
for time-sucks and those in need
It’s always been wall or nothing

I see you say no
to yourself every damned day
You say no to sleep
to exercise, to health
You say no to writing
and using your beautiful voice

I see you settle for less
dim down, put off
and abandon
I see the resulting sadness
the despair
and the hopelessness

Your life gets set aside
even writing gets set aside
it all gets set aside
to attend
to the needs of others

I wait and watch
and live for these days
when I see a glimmer of hope
of light
of love
of seeds of change

You’re starting to see
your boundaries
The ones in place
and those that need to be
I see you becoming
alive and empowered

I see you learning that
belonging is not equated
with over-giving
learning you can’t
“give” your way
into a relationship

I see you learning
I see you changing
I see you waking up
I see you setting boundaries
and I see you starting
to give to yourself.

~devon ervin