The Day After, SemicolonEDU 

Three years ago, I sat in a suicide awareness and prevention session given by our high school counsellors.  It was my first time attending a session such as this and also the first time that I’ve been around anyone openly talking about suicide. The first words of the session…

“Last year we had three completions…”

…the most painful statement that I’ve heard in a long time. I couldn’t help but to think of myself, my “near completion”…and the day after.

Nick Provenzano and Joe Mazza challenged the greater education community to help bring attention to mental health awareness by sharing their stories in the spirit of The Semicolon Project. 

The Semicolon Project 

A semicolon is used when an author could’ve chosen to end their sentence, but chose not to. The author is you and the sentence is your life.

At 15 years old, I made the decision to end my life. At 15, I thought that I was unloved, uncared for and insignificant. I didn’t have a moment where I decided to live…I just lived.

I wish that I had some pivotal moment where I decided that living was the thing to do, but I didn’t. What I did have was the day after…that day in a family filled hospital room where I understood the blessing of being alive and the pure emotional joy of not dying.

My heart still aches for those that didn’t have that moment of being thankful to be alive. So many didn’t have “the day after”…completions.

Such a finite word…

I can appreciate the semicolon project and I want to encourage you to not let it go by as yet another soon to be insignificant awareness project. Have open dialogue and be aware…fully. Be aware for the adults in your life as well as the kids that you teach. 

At 15, what I really wanted was to feel that I mattered. I didn’t want to die but I felt that it was much better than living. I was wrong and I understood that the moment that I opened my eyes…complete and yet incomplete. The significance of that moment still lives within me.

It’s the day after Nick and Joe’s campaign and for me, a reminder of the day that I learned to live again. 

The day that I was not a completion…


Comments 3

  1. This is amazing Rafranz. My Family has a History, and I’ve been there too. Thank you for sharing this!

  2. Pingback: I’m Not Too Late! My Story Isn’t Over! ; PROJECT SEMICOLONEDU | Game On Learn Strong

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