love with(out) a limit

infinite as my love is, its supply is still in danger of extinction. extant for only as long as it is preserved, a shared light never dims, but if mishandled and squandered, can die out.
my greatest mistake was loving (every one of) you too selflessly. believing in myself only for my capacity to love you unconditionally. bartering my dignity for your acceptance, and having less of both, every time.
self. less.
in (each of) you, I now see the difference between receiving and taking. those who take what is given to them come to expect it, to presume it theirs to have, to waste, to abandon. rather than receiving–with gratitude, with humility, with love–all I gave of myself, you instead took it with preemptive declaration, impatience. you did not value my love, and I accepted your devaluation of me in the name of the natural resource called unconditional love.
perhaps the one thing I can credit you for giving me is the understanding that only those who recognize the beauty of my love’s abundance will protect it from depletion. that I must be the gatekeeper of my light, lest I become vulnerable to eternal darkness.