My first struggle was to silence my love for you, which wasn't allowing me to even acknowledge how brutally you had damaged me. To let myself feel sorry for what was done to me and not for the fact that you were probably feeling guilty. It was an ordeal to shift the locus of my thoughts and emotions, from you to me. To see myself as a priority. To choose my pain and it's healing over yours. And realizations came in drops... bit by bit... over the parched ground of my cracked open heart. With each droplet that trickled down those crevices... I winced. The pain was unbearable. I'd wake up in the middle of the night... doubled over... with my hands over my chest. Trying to physically shield my heart from everything outside. It was breaking with every breath. And I wanted to give it the time... to break at it's own pace. I was in no hurry to collect the pieces. Or to bandage the wounds. I knew they needed to breathe... rather learn to breathe... anew.