From the Ones You Left Behind

“Suicide doesn’t end the pain, it just passes it on to someone else.”

They say that you will find yourself processing through the stages of grief.

1. Denial

2. Anger

3. Bargaining

4. Depression

5. Acceptance

They give you this layout of how your emotions will go, and for the most part, it’s pretty spot on.

But what they forget to mention, is you go through these stages multiple times. It isn’t some kind of trial period, where if you start now, you get the first month free.

It’s constant.

And maybe it is different for us, because your death is not just a death. Your death was a suicide.

The big S word that nobody ever wants to say. Suicide. Suicide. Suicide. Suicide.

It’s like in grief counseling when they have you state for the first time that you are a widower, because it makes it seem so real.

Suicide.

At first, we may have thought, “Never. This can’t be true, because they would never.”

But you did.

And nothing makes sense, because you aren’t here. All that is left are the pictures and videos, and we wish we could go back and take more to hold on to. We can’t hear your laugh down the hallway, or smell your scent as you sit beside us. All those little things we took for granted are now big things we want to go back and experience for 1 more second.

Which is normal for anyone who dies.

But then we wonder if maybe we could have said something to change your mind. Maybe what we were doing that night wasn’t as important as we thought it was. Did any of us have the power to stop you? To hold you? To tell you we loved you one more time? Two more times? Three more times? Over and over until you felt it bleed through your soul? I know for a fact, if we had known, we would have done anything.

It hits us, sometimes. In the middle of a movie, where a joke is. You’d be laughing, so we are laughing. But you aren’t here to laugh. So now we’re silent.

And we are so angry. Because why? Why did this happen? Why are your things still in the exact same place as they once were, but they remain untouched? Why are your bedsheets toussled up, just as you left them? Why did you leave us with this great, big, aching hole in our hearts where you used to be?

We all grieve in different ways. Some of us shut down. Some of us become a little louder. Some of us can’t process what has happened. Some of us don’t want to talk about it.

But here’s the thing.

We forgive you.

We forgive you for the pain and the unmade beds. We forgive you for the stages of grief. We forgive you, because we love you.

And maybe we will never completely understand why. But we know for sure that your biggest battle, against yourself, is over. And that you are free from pain. You fought long and hard to escape your demons.

Because of your suicide, we won’t stop fighting for you. Someone out there needs help, whether it be a shoulder to cry on, or a voice to listen to.

We see you, too. In things, all over the world. As the sun rises in the morning, and it turns that perfect shade of your favorite color, just for a solid second. In the springtime, when it’s nice enough to be outside, and a breeze rushes through the air. When a butterfly flaps on by and lands on our shoulder. You are there.

Because although you have left us, you are never really gone.

We are forever changed.

Mental illnesses such as depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia are known to be linked with suicidal thoughts and tendencies. The majority (85-95%) of people with mental illnesses don’t die by suicide, however over 90% of suicides are committed by people who have been diagnosed with a mental illness. These “demons” are vicious, and hard to exploit.

The conversations on mental illness and suicide is deemed to be “taboo.” No one ever wants to talk about it. Personally, I’m unsure as to why. Perhaps because people are afraid of saying the wrong thing, or they feel it isn’t their place to say something at all.

Of course you should say something. Ask a friend if they are okay, it may do wonders. If you see someone has been having a rough time, try and be there for them.

In a world such as ours today, it is so important to spread love to others. You never know what anyone is going through in their own little world. Be kind.

A suicide close to me has impacted my life forever. For one of the greatest women I have ever met, please find We Can 5k For Kelci on Facebook, and like and share. πŸ’™

You are worth so much in this life.

Until next time,

Tay

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Eating Disorder Hotline: 1-800-931-2237
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD
Self-Injury Hotline: 1-800-DONT-CUT
For more hotlines that you or a loved one may need, visit http://www.pleaselive.org/hotlines/
Stay alive. πŸ’™

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Right Here, Right Now

“But that 2,123 hours, a bend in the universe is gonna make everything in our whole world change.”

I’m sitting in class, surrounded by my fellow senior classmates as Bob Dylan’s “Forever Young” blasts through my headphones. They’re all signing yearbooks, and studying for finals. Talking about college. And while it is all very exciting, I can’t help but feel a rather somber feeling take over me.

In just a few days we will be done. Some of us are leaving the state, and some of us are leaving the country.

She’s going to DC.

He’s going to Ohio.

She’s going to Florida.

They’re going to Kansas.

She’s going to Virginia.

They’re going back to their home countries.

He’s going to California.

They’re staying here.

I’m going to Texas.

This is it.

These are our last times laughing with each other in the hallway, or spitting out jokes in class. The last times to share the stage together, or sing that song together.

It’s rather bittersweet, don’t you think? While we are so excited to move on in life, this is the last time we will ever be together. Maybe even the last time some of us will ever see each other again.

We will walk the stage on May 25th and be done. The commencement of our adult lives begins.

We become lawyers.

We become doctors.

Teachers. Scientists. Broadway stars. Musicians. Social workers. Journalists. Police officers.

Our kindergarten fantasies played out, right in front of our eyes. I still see us as the kids who drink from juice boxes and take naps every day.

While I can’t say I’m heartbroken to leave behind high school drama, and rigorous tests, I will miss these moments that it seemed I took for granted when I wasn’t paying attention.

I blinked.

So as my last week of high school begins, I will be soaking in every moment. The laughing with my friends in the hallway. The frustration of not being able to unlock my locker on the first try. The sitting at a desk, even though I hate it. The rush of exhilaration when the lunch bell rings. Seeing my friends as I know them now, because it will be different after this.

My apartment is being packed up, box by box, and I’m excited for my future. I’m excited for all of our futures, and what we are going to make of ourselves.

But we have our whole future to do that.

These last few days? These are the last we will ever get of that. There is no more time.

If you are a senior in high school right now, I encourage you to take these days and enjoy every moment. Enjoy the moments you wouldn’t normally enjoy, even if it feels strange. Listen to your teacher’s lecture with a full heart.

Most of us will walk the stage and be instantly glad it is over. Not many of us like school, and that’s why we look forward to it being over. That is why we forget to cherish the moments with the people around us.

I, for one, can’t wait to throw that cap in the air.

Congratulations, class of 2018. You made it. Finally.

May you grow up to be righteous
May you grow up to be true
May you always know the truth
And see the lights surrounding you
May you always be courageous
Stand upright and be strong
And may you stay
Forever young

This is my last week with my friends before we go our separate ways, so you won’t hear from me until I’m a high school graduate. But don’t worry, I’m not going anywhere. I have tons of words left for you.

Until next time,

TayπŸ’™

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Eating Disorder Hotline: 1-800-931-2237
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD
Self-Injury Hotline: 1-800-DONT-CUT
For more hotlines that you or a loved one may need, visit http://www.pleaselive.org/hotlines/
Stay alive. πŸ’™

This Side of My Skin

(Photo done by LG)

I’m not a whole person, and I don’t think I ever will be. Parts of me died in the house I grew up in. Parts of me died as I aged and life experiences wacked me in the face. Parts of me died as people continued to walk out of my life.

I visit these parts of me in my dreams, where I am whole again. Where I don’t stand out from people because of what I’ve been through, because in my dreams, I haven’t been through it. In my dreams, those people have not left. In my dreams, I see them, and we are happy, and we are laughing. In my dreams, everything is okay.

And then the morning comes, and I wake up to who I really am, with all of the broken, dead parts of me, still attached. Because even though they have died, they are still apart of me. And as pieces continue to chip away, they still fall behind like chains attached to me. They are still parts of me, even though they are no longer alive.

My first instinct is to feel ashamed. Of me. Of the skin that I breathe in, for everything I have been through and everyone who has ever graced it. I feel ashamed of myself because at times all I feel like I am is damaged goods, dragging along an endless and growing chain of dead pieces of myself. That this chain will just continue to grow until all that I am is a chain. All that I am is dead pieces.

Something happens though. It is small, and it is not fast. The whole in which a dead piece of yourself once was starts to rebuild. It is painful. It is hopeful. It is scary. There is laughter, and pain, and scar tissue. There are many tears.

Our scars make us who we are. Sometimes, we are ashamed of them. Sometimes, we are afraid. Sometimes, yes, we drag along the empty, fragile, dead, pieces of us. We all have them. Some, more than others. Some ignore them, while some, open heartedly accept them.

There is no reason to be ashamed of the chains you drag behind you, because it makes you who you are, in a sense. Without them, you wouldn’t be where you are today. And maybe you don’t exactly know where that is, yet. And that’s okay too. You don’t have to. You can cry, or scream. Or laugh. Or drive. But never feel ashamed for who you are.

I don’t think I will ever be whole again. I don’t believe in any knight in shining armor to come sweep me off my feet and save me. I’m the hero of my own story. I save myself. But still, I don’t think these pieces will ever be filled in completely.

And that’s okay.

That makes for some grand stories to tell.

Until next time,

TayπŸ’™

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Eating Disorder Hotline: 1-800-931-2237
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD
Self-Injury Hotline: 1-800-DONT-CUT
For more hotlines that you or a loved one may need, visit http://www.pleaselive.org/hotlines/
Stay alive. πŸ’™

I Visited the Columbine Memorial

Sometimes, I do things on a whim. I used to wander a lot, but have recently lost that part of me with events in my life.

This weekend, I had to drive to Denver for the first time alone for a March for Our Lives organizational meeting. As I made it to the 3/4 way mark, I realized my speech was not yet perfected, and I was stressing out just a little bit. So, in .4 seconds, I made a split decision to make a pit stop on my way to Denver. Besides, I had 2 hours to spare before I needed to be at the meeting.

In the midst of our day to day lives, we tend to forget what’s important. We start fighting for something, and then we forget why we started fighting for it in the first place. This is what happened to me.

Upon arriving in Littleton, Colorado this Saturday morning, I instantly felt the gravity of the town and everything in it. I had seen the news coverage from years ago, and I had been shown images of the town. I couldn’t help but wonder if these fences I was passing were the same fences the children of Columbine hopped over to escape the terror of their school.

The library was the site of the most casualties that day back in April of 1999. Now, it is torn down and replaced with a beautiful wall to memorialize it. I sat in the parking lot and looked at that school, unable to comprehend that something of that magnitude could have happened there. I imagined the boy hanging out of the library window, and Rachel Scott smiling just years before. I couldn’t handle sitting there with that on my mind.

Less than a mile from the school itself is a walking path that leads you back to the Columbine Memorial.

I found it beautiful that there was a sign to remind people of the etiquette that should be followed as they visit.

I wasn’t expecting many emotions, even though my mom told me to bring Kleenex before I hung up the phone with her. She specifically said “make sure you bring some tissues with her.” I’m still learning to listen to my mom at 19 years old.

The Wall of Healing is a stone wall in the shape of a semi-circle that includes quotes from students, teachers, and parents. This wall was touching to read, and even more touching to see. I will only include a couple of pictures, as a strongly encourage you to visit the memorial in person yourself.

There were many touching, heartfelt words. There were many deep, articulate quotes. These will all resonate in my mind and heart for the rest of eternity.

But none of these words will stick with me as much as what I actually saw at the memorial.

Flowers. Flowers beyond flowers. There were wilted rose petals blowing across my sandaled toes, and stiffened stems crushed on the ground. If you looked in crevices, you could see the residue of past flowers. Years worth of roses sat on this memorial.

Something even more heart wrenching for me was seeing the fresh ones. The fresh bouquets, and the fresh letters that will forever be left unread. Someone has been missing their loved one. Someone has been here recently, wishing they could hear their voices just one more time. All of these lives were lost in such a senseless act.

That’s when it dawned on me, and I started uncontrollably weeping right in the middle of a graveyard of roses.

Everyone is so busy arguing about their guns vs mental health vs abortions vs bullying they’ve forgotten the mass sadness of it all. These lives have been lost. These beautiful, beautiful lives are gone.

Some of these children weren’t even old enough to get behind a car, and they were taken. They never got to graduate. They never got to walk down the aisle. They never got to see the world. And now, some of us are too scared to even go to school. Why would we want to go see the world?

These beautiful lives will forever be stuck at 17, 18, 19. They will never get to go through a midlife crisis, or feel their laugh change when they hit 27 and have their first child. They are forever stuck at the age their life was taken from them.

That is what is truly important here. Their lives. Our lives. The fact that children are losing their lives by getting an education. Something has to change, and you can’t deny that.

It could be me. It could be your child. It could be your grandchild, your niece, your nephew.

This is what hit me so hard as I read through their individual memorials on stone.

This is what I’m fighting for. This is what is truly important.

After I left the memorial, I sat in my car and wrote the best draft of my speech I had ever written, tears and all.

I deeply encourage you to take the time to visit Columbine High School and the memorial attached to it. It is a sobering experience, and one I will hold with me for the rest of my life. If I ever decide to have any children, I will see that they know of this as soon as they’re old enough to understand.

Remember to take the time to remember what it is that keeps the blood pumping in your veins, and what makes the fight worth fighting.

Until next time,

TayπŸ’™

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Eating Disorder Hotline: 1-800-931-2237
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD
Self-Injury Hotline: 1-800-DONT-CUT
For more hotlines that you or a loved one may need, visit http://www.pleaselive.org/hotlines/
Stay alive. πŸ’™

Love. Love. Love.

There’s nothing you can know that isn’t known. Nothing you can see that isn’t shown. There’s nowhere you can be that isn’t where you’re meant to be. It’s easy
All you need is love

.”

-The Beatles

My heart is heavy, but my heart is determined. It’s a constant battle between the two sides, on which one will outweigh the other. I’ve decided to let them be equals, because to suppress one would just do more damage than good.

I’ve come to the realization that there is not enough love in our world anymore. There is so much fear, hatred, and war. But the love has all but slipped away from us. We’ve forgotten, it seems. That, or we have just been so blindsided to give it.

We get so caught up. So caught up in making sure we look good, or are doing the “right things” we don’t make time to love one another. We don’t stop to wave hello. We don’t do things out of the kindness of our hearts anymore. We don’t love.

School has been cancelled two days in a row for my town because of someone’s inability to love. They have so much hatred in their hearts, so much damage that they had to inflict fear and suffering into the minds of the people around them. Because of that, we couldn’t get an education. I couldn’t smile at people in the hallways, or laugh with my friends. I couldn’t see the people that I love, because of someone and their hate.

In America, now is the time for change. Almost everyone has stated that. “We need change. / It’s time for a change. / etc. Etc.” The truth is, that change doesn’t all rely on guns. It doesn’t all rely on metal detectors in every school entrance. It doesn’t rely on our president and his decision to play golf in the midst of a tragedy. Change relies on you and me.

If we want change, it starts with us. While we wait for laws to start, that’s our time to start. Why do we consistently attack each other on Facebook for a difference in opinion? Why do teenagers think it’s okay to start anonymous Instagram accounts to slander each other until they’re nothing but dirt? “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

We are the change.

When we go back to school, think of how you treat other people. Are you loving? Are you kind? Or are you too busy worrying about how you look to other people? Are you taking the time to talk to people? Are you listening?

It shouldn’t take a mass school shooting at our school to bring us together. We should already be together. The small things, the drama, whatever has torn you apart, it shouldn’t matter anymore. If someone were to come in tomorrow and take that person away, would you regret the last thing you ever said to them? Would you want to go back and change it? Your frenemy. Your ex girlfriend. If someone came and took their life tomorrow, would all of that drama be worth it if you never got to say what you really wish you could have said?? Love, people. Love.

Now is your chance.

I can’t stress this enough. I try with every fiber of my being to live by this motto, and it is to love. Love with all of your heart, and then love with another organ. Forgive, and love. Love and love and love.

Today is March 1st, which is also #selfharmawarenessday. The picture above is my battle scars, and a tattoo that means the absolute world to me. Self harm comes in all different forms. All too often, we suffer alone. We suffer in silence. You never know what someone may be going through, or what demons they are battling inside. This is another reason why love is so damn important.

You are not alone. You are lovely. You are worth it. You are brave. You are loved. You will always be all of those things and more. And I am always here for you.

I believe that love is a powerful thing. If we had more love in our hearts, it would do wonders for us all.

You can be the change.

I can be the change.

We can be the change.

Love. Love. Love.

Until next time,

TayπŸ’™

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Eating Disorder Hotline: 1-800-931-2237
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD
Self-Injury Hotline: 1-800-DONT-CUT
For more hotlines that you or a loved one may need, visit http://www.pleaselive.org/hotlines/
Stay alive. πŸ’™

PS.

March 24th, I will be attending the March for Our Lives in Colorado. I have readers from all over, so I encourage you to find a march in your state and attend as well!

PPS.

A great deal of stress has impacted my community this week. I’m posting this here, in case anyone who reads this knows any information. Stay safe, and stay strong Woodland Park.

I’m Terrified.

It is 11:26 pm. Sunday, February 25th.

I’m supposed to be sleeping, but instead I’m wide awake. I’m so exhausted. I’m filled to the brim with overwhelming anxiety, so much that I can feel my bed shaking beneath me.

I’ve done everything that Google tells you to do. I’ve listened to calm music. I’ve taken a warm shower, and brushed through the tangles in my hair. I washed my face. I lathered on lavender lotion. I put on warm clothes.

But nothing is helping, because I’m still here and anxious.

Events at my school and in our world lately have taken a toll on me that I can’t seem to shake. When does it stop? When does it get better?

This weekend, our principal sent out an email regarding a threat made at our school this past Friday. Keep in mind, threats and allegations have been coming in for a few weeks now already. I heard rumors about it, but didn’t think it was a real thing until police force showed up and wouldn’t let anyone into the bathrooms.

It doesn’t make sense to me why things like this are happening.

I shouldn’t have to be afraid to walk into school every day. I should be focusing on graduation in 3 months. Who thinks “This is so funny, let me write a threat to 1,000+ students and staff and get away with it”?? It’s not funny. It’s not a joke anymore. Whether you wrote it on a piece of paper for someone to find, wrote it on a bathroom stall, or posted it on Instagram for the world to see, I want you to realize it is not funny.

By making these “threats” you have taken away the security of education from us. Despite whether or not you like school, you are supposed to feel safe there. You aren’t supposed to feel like at any moment someone could come and cause harm to you and your friends.

I spent a long time tonight trying to decide on going to school or not. Let that sink in for a moment. I thought staying home in my bed was better than going for an education. Because now, in order to do that, I feel like I am risking my life. Everything sets of feelings of fear inside me. Everything.

Anytime someone screams.

Anytime the PA system goes off.

Banging sounds.

Books dropping.

Loud noises.

Crowds of people.

Assemblies.

Phones ringing.

Lunch time.

Too much talking at one time.

Not enough talking at one time.

Fire alarms.

ALICE training.

Locked doors.

Unlocked doors.

Windows without screens.

Rooms with too many windows.

Rooms with no windows.

Armed SRO’s.

Police cars outside.

Adults whispering.

Too many people standing at one time.

Opened lockers.

The list goes on and on and the anxiety just piles up. I just want it to stop. I want my school to be safe again. I want to feel as if when I leave for school, I will make it back to my bed that night.

Should I write letters to my family in case something happens while I’m at school? So they know I love them?

Why is sending us to public school starting to sound more like sending us to war?

I said it once, and I will say it again. I shouldn’t have to be afraid to go to school.

It is to the point now that I’ve checked into animal therapy sessions just to ease my nerves on things. These feelings don’t just go away, no matter how well our school handles these situations.

My friends and I choose to stick together through all of this chaos, and for that I am eternally grateful. We are all coping in our own ways, but to have each other is something we all definitely need right now.

If you’re struggling with these same fears because you go to Woodland, or go to public school in general I want you to know you’re not alone. It is a scary world we are living in today where we focus more on living at school than getting our diplomas. I think one of the best things for us all to do is stick together. I hope with every fiber in my being that things will start looking up.

Until then, I was wondering if my readers would help some of us out. Share something that makes you smile, laugh, or just feel good. Maybe it’s a song, a YouTube video, or a picture of your dog. Comment your happy thoughts on this so that anyone feeling these same issues can see it, and have their mind clear for a few minutes. There’s too much negativity anywhere you look in this world today. Having just a moment of positivity could do a lot of us some good.

Until next time,

TayπŸ’™

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Eating Disorder Hotline: 1-800-931-2237
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD
Self-Injury Hotline: 1-800-DONT-CUT
For more hotlines that you or a loved one may need, visit http://www.pleaselive.org/hotlines/
Stay alive. πŸ’™

What It is Like to Live in the Land of Guns with a Mental Illness

**This blog contains sensitive topics that may trigger certain readers. Please take caution when reading.**

You have to live under a rock if you haven’t seen the arguments regarding the recent events over the past few days.

“Guns vs people”

“Mental illness vs guns”

“People vs parenting skills”

“Guns vs abortion” (..what?)

In my opinion, you can have whatever standing you want on the argument. I’m not going to block you on Facebook or shun you if I walk past you in the meat section of Wal-Mart on a Tuesday evening. The truth is, there’s more than one factor that goes into all of this. It’s not just one solid problem to fix and then everything will be solved. You fix mental illness (however that may be) and you still have guns. You fix the gun problem and you still have the mental health issue. We rally up parents to “discipline their children better,” but we still miss a few.

People are sitting back on Facebook and Twitter and attacking each other due to their different opinions on what our country needs to fix. Let me just throw this out there: that’s not helping anything. You, going off on Brenda for 8 days straight in the comments section of a post isn’t going to help what you’re standing for.

Here is my take on things.

Growing up, I didn’t see a lot of guns unless it was on TV. Even then, I didn’t watch much that had anything to do with guns or violence to begin with. If my parents had guns, I didn’t know about it. Guns were out of sight, and out of mind.

As most of you know, things got really tough for me as years went on. (If you don’t know you can read about that here. ) I was diagnosed with PTSD, severe dysthymia, and depression. At the time, I didn’t like the thought of it. I didn’t want to talk about it or even address it, but now I’m open to conversing about my struggles.

I was in a constant state of wanting to harm myself. I wanted to get out of this world, one way or another. It was too hard to take anymore. So, I thought, why not? They make it seem so easy to do on TV. You take a gun and you just pull the trigger. You’re done, right?

But, my house didn’t have any guns.

I remember clearly one night as I was sitting on a couch with my best friend, watching TV. Nothing was different. Nothing was off. We were just watching TV. Her dad came home from work, talking on his cell phone. I caught a glimpse of him just as he set a gun down on the counter. It was one he carried with him at all times, I later found out.

Being in the state I was, my first thought was that this was the place I could do it. If I could get ahold of that gun, that’s the one I could use.

I never tried to hurt myself with a gun, but I always thought about it. I always knew that if I wanted to enough, the option was there. And that’s scary to think about.

It’s scary to know that anyone could go out and buy a gun without anyone knowing anything about them.

My brother’s uncle is another example. A few years ago, he was in a really bad place. He took a gun and locked himself in the bathroom. As his wife listened in through the bathroom door, he fatally shot himself. I always wonder what would have happened had he not had access to that gun. Maybe he could have gotten help. Maybe he would still be here to hold his children and see how tall and smart they’ve become.

I would gladly give up my right to go out and buy a gun any day, if it meant the safety and security of my classmates and future generations to come. My little brother should be able to go to school and feel safe when he walks in. He should have to worry about what’s for lunch that day and what game he will play at recess, not if he will ever make it home.

I would like to clarify that mental illness doesn’t always mean that you’re going to shoot up a school, or kill people while they’re at a concert, or even yourself. I was never in the thought process of wanting to hurt anyone but myself. End of the line- guns shouldn’t be as easy to access. They should not be out for children. They should not be out for teenagers. They should not be out for people who may or may not harm themselves.

Have you read the news stories of 5 year olds who are playing pretend when they find a gun and accidentally shoot themselves??

This shouldn’t happen.

We have taken advantage of our right to bear arms. Enough is enough.

A 19 year old kid, reported to the FBI for posting that he was “going to be a professional school shooter one day” should never have had the opportunity to get an AR-15 in his possession. Never. This could have been prevented.

The students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School are standing up for what they believe in. Instead of being another number, or another pinpoint on a map, they’re rising against the odds. They are protesting. They are rallying. They are becoming.

On March 24th of this year, they have put together an event called March of Our Lives. They will be marching for reform, so that this doesn’t have to happen ever again. I hope to be lucky enough to attend one of these marches. I stand with you.

This has to end. But it won’t end until we do something about it. Attend walk outs and sit ins. March. Contact your representatives. Write to everyone you possibly can.

We are the change we wish to see in our world. It starts with us.

Until next time,

TayπŸ’™

National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-273-8255
Eating Disorder Hotline: 1-800-931-2237
Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE
Child Abuse Hotline: 1-800-4-A-CHILD
Self-Injury Hotline: 1-800-DONT-CUT
For more hotlines that you or a loved one may need, visit http://www.pleaselive.org/hotlines/
Stay alive. πŸ’™