You have never met me,
never seen my thoughts,
never heard my dreams,
and you have never known me.
Now though, with this
you will know me,
a little piece anyway.
and in this piece
you will meet me,
and hear me.
I only wish I could give you more.
I could never give you all of me
because I never have all of me at once.
But here you go…
Now that you have read this,
forever with you
you will carry this
little piece of me.
I haven’t lost it
because you have it.
and if I ever do
at least I know
that you held this
that I give to you now.
When I was younger, this poem meant so much to me.
I felt that it encompassed so much how I felt. I wanted so desperately to connect with people. I wanted to give them a little piece of myself because maybe then, I would be understood, and I would no longer be so desperately alone.
I’m not so sure I that I still want people to have a piece of me. I don’t know if I have enough of me to be handing out and giving away.
I like to give to people. I do my best to be kind, I like to share my talents and skills if they are of use to other people. Rarely, if ever, do I ask for anything in return. Not because I don’t see the value in my work, but because I like to give. If I have a skill that can benefit others, I don’t mind giving as much as I am able and have time for.
I don’t keep a running tally. I don’t add up how much I feel I’m owed for my contributions. I do like to set limits on what I am willing to give. So I ever offer you my time and skills, please realize, this is a gift given freely. I don’t see people as a means to an end. I give because I know how good it feels to have things given freely when you need it most.
People and their needs take up my very limited spoons. Socializing and attending events is often exhausting. I have sensory issues, and crowded places are down right difficult to endure. Coping with social situations, dealing with numerous people is a strain on a cognitive level. It is painfully difficult for me to keep track of what is being said, read body language all while filtering out noise, lights and a variety of environmental factors.
Add any sort of emotional strain on top of that, and my sensory issues sky rocket. I get to the point that I can’t even stand being touched or have anyone stand near me when I’m over stimulated. I retreat, withdrawal and check out. Because I can’t stop feeling things around me. It’s hard to keep those boundaries in place, set proper limits and know when the things affecting me are not actually threats or even my problems to deal with.
This isn’t ever meant to be personal when I withdrawal. I’m not trying to punish people or make a point. I’m trying to survive.
I need the great outdoors, I need one-on-one communication, and I need non-demanding, calm and pleasant people to deal with.
I’m doing my best not to hand over any more of myself. I have a son with Autism. I have a husband, a precious little dog, and my home to care for. And I have myself to care for. My home and my family have all the pieces of me that I have to give.
And so, dear readers, I’d like to encourage you to also value yourself and all those little pieces that make up who you are. Hold them close, value them, cherish them, and only give them away to those who matter. Not to those who you’ve never met, who don’t know you or value you.
You are precious. Every little bit of you matters. You will be stronger if you’re not giving away parts of yourself. If you are stretched too thin, giving too far and wide, you won’t be able to take care of yourself and those people in your life who matter most. Be kind, first to yourself, then, if you have enough, to others around you.