I am a runner.
I believed it because you said it with such authority.
But is it true? No—not even a little bit.
I stay because I am brave.
I stay because I am strong.
I stay because I am built for hurricanes.
You are the runner.
So many moments you were called to stay.
But you ran away.
Every. Single. Time.
You let me believe I was the broken one.
The unworthy one.
But I see now it’s not personal.
You abandon everyone who asks you to show up in any real way.
It is your lack running the show.
You bully, dominate, control the narrative.
Terrified the truth will be uncovered.
Beneath your “doing” is manipulation.
Designed to build a hero’s image.
But it was all an illusion.
To hide the cowardice.
My work is to unravel the narrative you expertly built.
To discover myself outside of your carefully crafted storyline.
To hand your traumas back to you.
To carry for yourself.
I held them for so long, I collapsed under the weight.
I needed you to be the strong one…
But you didn’t step up and stand by me.
You didn’t offer to carry your shame.
Alleviate some of the burden.
You just heaped on more.
And then you ran.
You found someone else to hold it for you.
Too weak to carry it yourself.
I see the pattern clearly now.
So many moments you were called to courage.
And you ran.
You left me to face all of life’s challenges…
To manage all the moments you were too afraid to show up for.
I made excuses for your absence.
I resolved all your problems for you.
All by myself.
Because I am the strong one.
The brave one.
The one who can face any challenge.
I enabled your hiding.
I gave you the credit.
When the credit was all mine.
I am not the runner.
I never was.
Because I am a damn warrior.