Four years ago, I was in a dark place. I was questioning my purpose in life and felt discouraged about being a social worker. I had become wayward and lost my way. It has been a long journey, but I am in a better place now. When I face moments of uncertainty, or struggle, when I feel like giving up, I look down at a tattoo that I strategically placed on my arm that states "Warr;or." Looking at this tattoo reminds me that I too am a warrior, and not defined by my limitations, the past, or what other people think.
Warrior is defined by Meriam-Webster as: a person engaged or experienced in warfare; broadly: a person engaged in some struggle or conflict. To add to this definition, I see a warrior as someone who not only is a fighter but as a person of strength, courage and bravery.
I want to make sure that you notice the word “Warr;or” and the spelling. The word itself carries a great deal of strength and hope for me. It is a symbol of strength and hope. It reminds me of the importance of always being a warrior and to never back down. This word reminds of the importance of fighting not only for myself, but well for those who don’t have a voice and experience the same struggles.
The semi-colon project defines the semi-colon tattoo meaning on their website as: “A semicolon represents a sentence the author could have ended but chose not to. The sentence is your life and the author is you.” As someone who has been depression since the age of 14, it’s a reminder to keep going and that although I struggle with depression, it’s not the end of my story. I am still a work in progress.
Project Semicolon is a non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention of suicide, based out of Colorado. The mission of their organization is to provide resources and support to those who are struggling with mental health. Their mission seemingly holds a belief that suicide is preventable and everyone can help with prevention. I first heard of the project four years ago. Their mission immediately resonated with me, as well as the spirit of their cause. As someone who has seen firsthand the catastrophe that happens when someone has a mental health condition, the impact can be devastating.
Project semicolon was founded by Amy Bleuel. This excerpt was taken from her website: “Despite the wounds of a dark past I was able to rise from the ashes, proving that the best is yet to come. When my life was filled with the pain of rejection, bullying, suicide, self-injury, addiction, and even rape, I kept on fighting. I didn’t have a lot of people in my corner, but the ones I did have kept me going. In my 20 years of personally struggling with mental health I experienced many stigmas associated with it. Through the pain came inspiration a deeper love for others. Please remember there is hope for a better tomorrow.” These are struggles that are all too familiar to many of us.
Amy committed suicide in March of 2017. It saddens me to see the magnitude of suicide and how it’s not always about how much strength someone has. Sometimes even the strong and the resilient struggle. Please visit their website and learn more about how you can help prevent suicide and help others fight this invisible problem that plagues so many of us.
Please visit: https://projectsemicolon.com/