My semicolon story: National Suicide Prevention Week

My semicolon story: National Suicide Prevention Week
This post is as spontaneous as it gets. Spawned from seeing photo after photo of "semicolons" on people's wrists. The semicolon symbolizes a deeper meaning. According to The Semicolon Movement, "The semicolon is used when a sentence could have ended, but didn't". It symbolizes hope in the face of suicidal ideations. Suicide has been a subject of sadness and fascination for more years of my life then I care to admit. First, as a daughter to a suicidal mother and then as a witness of suicidal behavior as a registered nurse. I speak scientifically of course, but we are talking about the human element of it all: pain. Deep seeded pain from which their is seemingly no return.

My mother's journey with multiple attempts at killing herself was enough of a heartache that I could not even conceive of suicide as an option for myself. The hurt was real enough, however, and I dealt with it the best way I knew how; reading, writing, and music. True teen angst. Initially, it was reading the pain of others. Nothing has quite the feel of depressing camaraderie as Edgar Allen Poe's short stories or a Shakespeare tragedy. This transitioned into writing. Writing has always been an outlet for my pain for as long as I can remember. I wrote in my journals(Note to self: I need to remember to burn those.), but I enjoyed writing poetry the most. My poetry was one of a angry and distraught teenager, but it helped me get my feelings out. It saved me. Nothing tears the soul into pieces quite like keeping your sadness inside.

Why share my story? I cannot even begin to tell you how utterly alone I felt during my teenage years. I had a few close friends, but relatively speaking I felt like an alien. The suffering I endured, I did so behind closed doors and in my bedroom alone. No one should feel that level of loneliness and void of all hope. I want everyone to know that it is not only possible to come out of the depths of hell relatively unscathed, but you can learn to thrive. The only possible roadblock? Yourself of course. You and you alone must use your suffering as motivation to "feel good" again.
My semicolon story: National Suicide Prevention Week
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Here comes my main point; I do not need anyone's sympathy. Empathy is welcome. Feeling sorry for someone is wasted energy. Letting someone know they are not alone, however, can change someone's life. Giving someone hope, well that is always energy well spent. There is always hope. As long as you are standing here, there is hope. When I was a child, I still remember my mom showing me the picture of the crane trying to eat a frog. The frog is squeezing the crane's throat in an attempt to prevent the crane from eating him. It says, "Don't ever give up". My mantra.

Giving up is the point of no return. Giving up is letting the world win. Giving up is not in my nature. I will go on fighting until the very end. If I am able to instill one single virtue in my children it is this: be kind to all. You never know who is fighting the battle of their life. Life takes us at a furious pace. We sometimes forget to slow down and notice. Or, perhaps we just simply ignore the suffering of strangers or friends. It is too tough to talk about...right? Wrong. It takes no thought to smile. Both kindness and a smile can turn a life around.

A word of advice to those who are currently struggling; Adversity makes us stronger. Do not let life break you. Life is full of bumps and bruises. It is your duty to get up and try again. Let it mold you...let it make you better. There is always a way out of is a slow road, but one day you will see the sun shine again and be grateful that you never gave up. The key is never giving up and believing(always) that you will make it.

Need to talk? Call 24/7 1-800-273-TALK(8255) or visit for more information on suicide prevention.


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