Monday, April 25, 2011

Hearts On The Outside

The other day I found out about an "event" on Facebook that's actually happening today, right now. The invite was titled "<3 on ur wrist" so I was ready to ignore it as, without wishing to seem cold and heartless, I don't do charity wristbands or suchlike. Then, because these things bug you until you respond I went to the page and discovered that much as I generally don't do such things, this one seemed like something I should maybe make a nod towards.

On april 25th, 2011, there will be a day dedicated to poeple who are battling depression and suicide and to advocate a lifestyle of unconditional love. on this day, draw a heart on your wrist, to symbolize that you are wearing your heart on your sleeve. ask someone how they’re doing. tell someone you love them. nobody should have to feel so bad about themselves that they take their own life. take this challenge. save someone’s life

Now I am a great believer in mental health awareness, but I also hate things like this "event" where people tend to make some small gesture out of obligation or a sense of "doing the right thing", certainly by the blurb I don't truly feel they "get it". Can I claim to be doing much more? Probably not. I'm not trying to be preachy, I just realised that no matter what is done, it's a topic that I feel I can't ignore.

So this morning I went to The Survivors Of Suicide Project sim. I must confess I don't know how official it is or anything but there seems to be a lot of very good information around. I made my way to the candle hall, where you can remember those you have lost and started reading the sea of hover text above those pixel flames. A reminder of many lives, some with a simple name that means something to the person who placed it, and some with names we can all relate to, such as "Mother", "Dad", "Sister", and "Me".

Hearts Outside

But much as I believe in suicide awareness the advice of this event holds true in general. Ask someone how they’re doing. Tell someone you love them. Things I freely admit I don't do often enough. The latter has especially been praying on my mind lately due to a close friend's recent (non-suicide) loss, and over the weekend I watched an evermore frail family member bleeding after a fall.

There are many people in our lives; all are precious to someone, and some are very precious to you. A smile can change the world, in both directions (and sometimes it's just a really cool way to freak people out).

This post has been presented with the assistance of my friend at HelaMiyo's the "Just Saying" pose pack ('cause I'm just saying), Aitui's Day I Died T-shirt, and the Silver Heart Bracelet (admittedly a little small for my big chunky man wrists but I'm confident you can get adjustments if needed) which lets me wear my heart on my wrist comes from Little Ones Gems run by my very loveable niece. Musical accompaniment has been The Rolling Stones' "40 Licks".

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