You’re the strong one. The one everyone runs to. The shoulder to cry on. The silent listener. The patient advice-giver. The one with all the right words and the tightest hugs. I know you. I am you. I understand.
You turn your cellphone ringer to maximum volume when your friend goes to the bar just in case she needs you and you accidentally fall asleep. You stay up until 4 a.m. the night before your final to hold her hair and tuck her in to bed. You cancel your date night to stay in bed with her and eat Ben & Jerry’s ice cream while she cries him out of her system.
You do it because it’s easier to solve their problems than your own. Or maybe you’re hoping that it’ll solve yours by proxy, like if you help her get through her break up, your broken heart will mend itself. Or you’re just so busy helping everyone else, you completely forget about yourself. It’s easier to give advice than take it, anyway.
But no matter how hard you try, you can’t fix everyone. You’ll just end up hurting yourself in the process. There’s only so much weight one person can carry.
Next time you try to help someone, choose yourself. It’s okay to take a day off from being everyone’s hero. Lock yourself in your room with a couple of your favourite movies, take a hot bath with candles and soft music, go to the mall alone and get lost for a while… it doesn’t matter, just give yourself a break. You were so focused on holding everyone else up you didn’t even realize you were drowning.
Take it from someone who knows, it’s easy to lose yourself in the chaos of everyone else. But just because you’re the one that everyone comes to for help doesn’t mean that you don’t need help too. You’re allowed to stay in bed all day because you just can’t bring yourself to move. You don’t have to cry alone in your bedroom at night; it’s okay to reach out for someone.
You’re the strong one. The one that everyone runs to. But it’s okay to be the weak one sometimes.