You cannot possess me.
You cannot tell me how to think or feel. You cannot dictate where my heart goes, or where my eyes wander off to.
I will not give you the book of my life and allow you to write in the blank pages for me. Those pages are mine, they were given to me to fill out in whatever way I see fit.
You may be featured as a character in my story, but you cannot control the story.
You shouldn’t. And I hope you don’t even want to.
Because, my dear love, I have spent so much time in a cage already. I sat there, alone, cold, confused, wondering why I couldn’t see the blue, blue sky that everyone outside the bars spoke so highly of.
I wanted that sky. I spent so long dreaming of the breeze that my feathers would find when I had the opportunity to stretch my wings. I just didn’t realize that I couldn’t fly while in that cage.
And, one day, I realized it.
I broke the cage.
And the one who placed me there—he was so mad. He told me that I was wrong for doing so, but I didn’t care. Because while he screamed, I was looking up, and I could see the sky for the first time ever. And it made me realize that I never, ever, ever want to be caged up again.
So please, I beg of you: don’t do that to me. Don’t even try. The moment I catch the briefest hint of iron bars, I will spread my wings and I will be gone—because that is in my nature, beloved.
I do not want to leave you. I do not want to be alone forever. But, more important than that, I cannot be caged.
I won’t allow it.
And you will whisper sweet words to me, try to tell me that you are mine and I am yours, but I am not yours. I will never be yours.
I am mine. I belong to me. I control my heart, my thoughts, my actions, my life. I will never surrender to you completely, so much as you may want me to.
“You are your best thing.” ~ Toni Morrison
I love you. I want to love you. I will love you.
But, I do not want to own you. I do not want you to be mine. Because you are yours, you are your best thing, and I am my best thing.
Together, we will be two great things existing alongside one another, supporting one another, making each other greater, and stronger, and beautiful. We will build an empire with our most marvelous power because, together, you and I can do it. I know we can.
All I ask is that you let this happen. You let me happen. Don’t stifle me or belittle me or try to make me less than what I am. Don’t try to put out my flame; I will only burn you.
And if you try to put out my flame, then believe me: I want to burn you.
Author: Ciara Hall
Image: Dan Queiroz/Flickr
Editor: Leah Sugerman
Copy Editor: Callie Rushton
Social Editor: Emily Bartran