Tuesday, September 12, 2017

STAY



hi.

i don't know you, not really

and you don't know me

not really

but i do know something about you

you were born to run

it's woven into your veins, as innate as breathing

"the fight or flight instinct", science teachers tell us

our reaction to stress or fear

and sometimes, you're just too tired to fight

so you take flight

you run and run and just want to keep running, trying to escape the echoes in your head

and you're gasping, not knowing where to go, just knowing that you've got to run, got to get away

stay

stay, darling, stay

when it all feels like too much

and you can't see two feet in front of you

and everything is closing in

stay

i know i know i know it's hard

and you don't want to fight anymore

because what's the point? it never gets better, so what's the point? what else is there to do?

stay

because let me tell you a secret

you're not going to be stuck here forever. you're not trapped in the dark forever. light breaks through, night turns to day, and that string pulled tight around your lungs breaks and you can finally breathe.

but how can you feel the warmth of the light on your skin if you don't stay?

stay

stay, because there is hope. stay, because there is joy. stay, because there is healing.

stay

stay, because the number of people who love you far surpasses anything you would probably even imagine. stay, because there are sunsets that you still haven't seen and music you still haven't listened to and adventures you still haven't had. stay, because you have so many more things to do. so many people to meet. stay for those dreams still curled up inside you. stories to write, places to go, things to create. stay, because even when everything feels like it's falling apart, you have a heavenly Father who loves you more than you are physically capable of comprehending and wants nothing more than to gather you in His arms, who has so many plans for you. Who has a future for you. Who created all of the stars and constellations and oceans and rivers and skies, and still knows the number of hairs on your head, because you are His, and He calls you His child.

stay

stay, darling, stay.

-----

It is estimated by the World Health Organization that one person dies by suicide every forty seconds. That number is staggering. My heart breaks for every individual who even has those thoughts enter their head, and even more for those who have chosen to end their lives because they didn't see another option. Those who couldn't bring themselves to stay. For all of those who have been left behind to deal with losing sons and daughters, sisters and brothers, friends, loved ones. I've personally witnessed friends grapple with the devastating effects of suicide, and I've seen how mind-blowingly difficult it is. There are not words to properly express how serious of an issue this is, and how deeply I wish that no one would ever have to go through that again. That people would see that suicide is not the answer.

As you may be aware, this week is National Suicide Prevention Week in America. About a month ago, my dear friend Elissa reached out to me with an idea to spread awareness about this issue. After dealing firsthand with the crippling pain of losing a friend to suicide eleven months ago, she discovered To Write Love On Her Arms, a really great organization who made their theme for this year's National Suicide Prevention Week "Stay". Elissa wanted to spread this message across the blogosphere, and I immediately knew that I wanted to be a part of it. She is sharing posts every day on this topic on her blog, and I really encourage you to head over there and check it out. I also really want to encourage you to spread the message as well. Write a blog post. Take a picture of you holding a sign with a reason to stay, or the word "stay" written on your hand, and post it on social media. Talk to your friends about it. Let's keep this going, even after National Suicide Prevention Week is over. 

In the words of To Write Love On Her Arms-

"Stay. Find what you were made for."



57 comments:

  1. Grace, this is really powerful. Thank you so much for sharing. Suicide is awful, having those sorts of thoughts is just awful as well. I know from experience. I don't know what I'll do yet, but I really want to help.

    ~ Pip

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pip, I am so sorry that you have struggled with this. That absolutely breaks my heart. You are so unbelievably awesome, please never forget that. I love you. ♥

      Delete
  2. That was lovely, Grace Anne! Thank you so much for being such an encouragement!

    -Mikayla-

    ReplyDelete
  3. Amen amen amen. Love how you connected science to reality to feeling - I work with high schoolers and I stand behind this so so so much. Great work and I love you for spreading awareness!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Olivia!! This comment really meant a lot to me. ♥

      Delete
  4. WOW THERE! These words feel like SO much MORE than words. This is an amazing piece!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Vanessa!!!!! :') ♥

      Delete
  5. This is beautiful, Grace. <3 <3 <3

    ReplyDelete
  6. I have been reading these posts and they are all absolutely beautiful and this was no exception. :) :) :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. This is absolutely breathtaking, Grace, I love it so much.

    ReplyDelete
  8. This is so moving. I love that you're doing this.

    ReplyDelete
  9. this is so beautiful, grace anne. thank you ❤️

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am beyond moved... This is so beautiful, Grace. I would love to take part in this amazing message and help spread the word. <3

    xx Kenzie

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow, thank you so much, Kenzie. ♥ I am so glad that you joined this movement.

      Delete
  11. This is just amazing…thank you :) <3

    ReplyDelete
  12. This is absolutely beautiful. YOUR WORDS ARE GOLDEN AND THEY ARE LIFE <333 thank you thank you thank you

    I WANT THIS TO BE SCREAMED FROM THE ROOFTOPS FOREVER AND EVER AND EVER AND EVER AND EVER

    *hugs*

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :') excuse me while I cry. Thank you so much, Abbie. ♥ It's something that I really want to scream from the rooftops, too.

      *HUGS*

      Delete
  13. This is an amazing poem. So incredible. and touching. Thank you for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Wow, this was such a thought-provoking poem. Very insightful.
    My heart breaks too, I have this ache that I want to help prevent that. So I will totally feature it in a blog post!
    By the way, my name is Amelia and I am a fellow Christian blogger, I discovered your own through a very dear friend of mine (Sophy from Lavender & Blue) and immediately subscribed.

    Amelia xxx
    <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you write that blog post, please send me the link! I would really love to read it. ♥

      It's so nice to meet you, Amelia! You are too sweet. I'll be sure to check your blog out! :)

      Delete
  15. You have the sweetest heart! Suicide is something that is so heartbreaking and earth shattering and such an important issue. Love this post and your words about God's plan for us all and the adventures we have yet to have. It's encouraging and inspiring and much needed! Thank you <3

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Erin, this comment filled my heart to the brim. :') You mean the world to me. ♥

      Delete
  16. Having been suicidal and trying self harm this was extremely encouraging. Thank you so much for writing this. I love poetry and you really brought this issue to light in a beautiful way. I just wanted to say thanks for encouraging me and keep it up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Emily, I am so sorry that you've struggled so deeply. That absolutely breaks my heart. I may not know you very well, but can I just say- you are so beautiful and precious and loved. Keep fighting. ♥♥♥♥ My email is always open if you ever need anything. ♥

      Delete
  17. oh. my. goodness. this is beyond beautiful. I don't have words. thank you for this <3

    ReplyDelete
  18. Beautiful. Thought I've never dealt with feeling as thought I wanted to end myself, I have dealt with feeling depressed and anxiety. Though I'm still healing, God is the Healer of my soul. I pray that this message is spread so far. This post was beautiful. You will encourage many in your life. God bless you!
    <3

    ~Ivie
    iviewrites.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I pray that God will continue to heal you!! Thank you so much for your words, Ivie- they truly mean so much to me. ♥

      Delete
  19. Wow, Grace. I think it's wonderfull you're doing something about what you believe in.

    https://thisstageoflife.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Samantha! I really appreciate you taking the time to stop by. :)

      Delete
  20. this is amazing. exactly what i needed. thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I don't personally know anyone who committed suicide, but even the thought of it - of anyone so desperately losing hope - makes me so distressed. Your words are beautiful, Grace, and I'll definitely share them if/when I meet someone who needs a reason to stay.
    Jem Jones

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's such an awful thing to think about isn't it? It absolutely breaks my heart.

      Thank you so much, Jem. That means a lot. <3

      Delete
  22. This is a beautiful poem, Grace. Thank you for sharing.

    Love
    Ashley
    ashleysyarnworks.etsy.com
    creatingpreciousmoments.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. This is really beautiful and I'm so glad you posted this. <3

    ReplyDelete
  24. Wow, this is absolutely amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  25. You're incredible and the best with words, and you encouraged me so much. We have to keep on looking ahead and hoping. ❤️❤️ Your blog is just the best. ��

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Maxene. You are such an encouragement to me! <3

      Delete
  26. every fourty seconds?
    dude that makes me want to cry. so hard. for so long. ahhhhh.
    but thank you so much for this post okay. thank you.

    Randy Abby
    WAKE ME UP Blog

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Right? When I read that statistic, my heart just shattered. s h a t t e r e d.

      Thank YOU, love. <3

      Delete

♥ Comments brighten my day- I'd love to chat ♥