On World Suicide Prevention Day, I figure it’s fitting to share a symbol: ; the semicolon.
“Don’t use a period in your life; use a semi-colon. You have more to say.”
I would like to share the story of my ribcage tattoo: a semicolon surrounded by a heart and an anchor. The Semicolon Project is all about how the semicolon is used grammatically to signify that the author could have ended the sentence there, but chose to continue. There are many people who have faced suicidal ideation, but chose to live instead. I am one of those people. So, on this day that means a lot to me, I share with you the promise I made in words to one of my best friends, as well as in ink on my side: I will always choose to continue my story, no matter what I face.
If you think that things can’t get better, if you think that the only thing to do is end it, if you have seen darkness and can’t find light, just remember this: there are people out there who love you. More people than you can imagine or name off the top of your head. The average suicide leaves 6 people deeply mourning, but I think that’s an underestimation and an understatement. There is a plan for you and if you leave, there is a part in the world that cannot be played. There would be a part left undone. You are here for reasons so fantastic and numerous that they’re hard to imagine! If you ever doubt that, ever, ever, ever, please send me a message and I will remind you that you are loved and you have a purpose. Please call or text a crisis hotline. Please have a friend sit with you until you feel safe to continue your sentence with a semicolon rather than end it with a period. You are beloved.
Refuse to let your semicolon become a period. Even when you might think something is over, something else is just beginning anew.
I love you and am here for you, friends.