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To the Men & Women Who Harden Kind Hearts .

I can't tell you how many times I have met a man and given him the benefit of the doubt (regardless of their baggage or how many of my friends warn me not to). I have always had that trait of always seeing the best in people, because who am I to hypocritically judge others for the cards their past has dealt them? Who am I to stand up on a soapbox with just 18 months sober under my belt and judge someone else for the baggage they pull behind them like a carry-on piece of luggage? Is this a strength or weakness in my character, to always want to see the best in everyone? I like to think it's the way God would look at all of us, so who am I to hold judgement over someone else's head.

Ask anyone like me and I bet they have an autobiography of heartbreak they could fill the pages of a book with. Because those of us with kind hearts have this undying optimism that people are generally good... Or least we want to believe that they are. You could throw us to the ground numerous times, yet we would still hold on to that tiny glimmer of hope that deep down inside people have that small piece of their heart that is still warm, still kind, and still good. We take the hurt, the put downs, the disrespect and all the while want nothing more than to "fix" this person and hold onto the "good times" we remember sharing with them.

With each and every hurt, a little part of our warm, kind hearts turns cold and hard. Our hearts have been hardened and chipped away at little by little with each time our kindness has been mistaken for weakness. Yet we continue to wear them on our sleeve and give so much to those that we see the good in. But I, for one, have started to notice that you can only harden so much of a heart. I have noticed recently that because of people in my past, my emotions and my heart have been changed over time. I find myself building up a wall higher and higher after every hurt, to protect what is left of this kind, warm heart... Because I don't ever want to be like one of those people. Because I still hold on to that bit of hope that one day someone will not take my kindness for weakness. Because someone will one day see my heart for all that it has to offer, all of the love I have to give to others.

So please, I beg you, if you have a heart like mine... do not let these people you encounter turn your heart cold and hard. These people are troubled and hurt inside, and the only way for them to make themselves feel strong and powerful is by pushing others down. They will use their words, their actions, and even their hands to make you feel like you are lesser than they are. They will put you down to have control over you and keep you around when they have no one else. One day you will see them for who they are inside. Your eyes will be open and your strength will return. And you will walk away. And then you will run in the opposite direction so far that you will be in an entirely new place, but you will feel your heart beating again. Find that warm, loving heart & soul that makes you the amazing human being you are and never let it turn cold.

But to you, the men and women who don't appreciate people with kind souls like ours... How dare you harden a heart that is so full of kindness and love? You are the first to take everything we have to give, and leave us broken, hurt, and cold. We would be the first ones to be there for you, but when we need you, of course, you are nowhere to be found. You take what you need from us, and leave when you are done. But we still have hearts so good and kind that we try to see the brighter side of you. One day we will be fine... without you. But do not think that you leave us unmarked and without lasting scars... You will leave us doubting and questioning every person we encounter that tries to show us love. You will leave us unable to fully put our trust in someone for a very long time for the fear of being hurt again. You will cause us to push away good people as a means of defending our hearts from being broken again.

But do not feel sorry for us. Do not waste one moment feeling pity or remorse for what we have been through. At the end of the day, these individuals that have tried so hard to turn our hearts to stone will not succeed. It may take some time, and a whole lot of self love, but our hearts will return to being warm, loving, and kind. We will stand back up with open arms and hearts ready to love. Because people with hearts like ours are so passionate and so resilient that you will never break us indefinitely. xx .

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