I love you.
I love you for all the times you kept me safe.
Stopped me from moving ahead before I was ready.
Saved me from making a mistake and being humiliated.
Held me back while others rushed into the fire and got burned.
Thank you for warning me of danger.
Thank you for protecting my pride.
Thank you for saving my life.
And today I have to tell you—I’m breaking up with you.
I want you to know it’s not you. It’s me.
I just can’t do this any more,
because I’m tired.
Tired of buffing and polishing and refining.
Tired of watching others be brave.
Tired of hiding in the dark.
Tired of feeling weeks and months and years slip away in rehearsal, without ever actually opening my mouth in public and singing my heart’s song to whoever in the world might want to listen.
Most of all, I’m tired of listening to your friend Shame. For years, I found her stories fascinating. For years, the sound of her voice would have me curled in a corner in a foetal position. For years, she wielded absolute power over me.
For years, I didn’t realise I was letting her control me
and that I could choose differently.
I could allow her to speak without believing her stories.
I could hold my ground when she said mean things.
I could tell everyone what she said to me.
Because there’s power in the telling.
With every story I share, I feel stronger than her.
With every lie I reveal, I trust my truth more than I trust hers.
Don’t get me wrong – you’ve been a great team.
I couldn’t have made it this far alone.
I wouldn’t be here without you.
But we’re playing the game differently now, the three of us.
I’m making the rules.
I’m calling the shots.
And you’re a part of my story,
instead of me being part of yours.
I love you both
and I’m breaking up with you,
because I’ve met someone else.
And I’m falling in love.
Author: Belinda Noakes
Editor: Sarah Kolkka