The word FAIL is slowly fading from my arm. Still very visible to me, others have to know it’s there or examine my arm closely to notice it. The sting still feels real to me. Cuts heal, but scars are permanent. Yeah, I know, Mederma is supposed to help. However, even if other people can’t see our scars, they still become part of us. We can choose to let them define who we are, or allow them to tell the story of our past as we move on.

Long sleeve shirts made the pain worse, and the pain was a constant reminder of how I felt. Along from the physical injury, my self-worth was far beyond gone. That’s why I chose the word FAIL. I wasn’t content with straight lines. I felt that I deserved to be branded with a word synonymous with worthless.

I’ll never forget the look on the faces of my Mom and Stepdad when I showed them my arm. Never once did they yell at me. Never once did they say that they were ashamed of what I had done. I believe it hurt them just as much as it hurt me. I don’t know if I ever thanked them for being my biggest supporters, even when I was down so low. If you all don’t mind, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank them for saving me from the darkest point I’ve ever experienced.

Mom and Tom, I love you both with all my heart. Thank you for saving me, and always believing in me, even when I don’t believe in myself.

It’s been around 7 months since my scar was actually a cut. I’m proud to say that I know I am not a failure. And, neither are you. You have amazing talents and people who love you. Recovering is hard as hell; it requires strength that we have to scrounge up from the deepest parts of our beings. I just want you to know, I believe in you and support you. I want you to be happy and realize that nobody is worthless.

We all take stumbles and falls; it’s part of life.  What I want you to take from this is that we all deserve to enjoy our lives. Help may be the last thing you think you want. Consider this, I am now happier than I have ever been. I’m not simply saying that to be optimistic. It is the pure truth. Guess what? If you are struggling right now, it doesn’t mean you are hopeless. You hit an incredibly hard part of life. My family at Open Our Eyes and I know you can be happy once again. Let us help you open your eyes to the remarkable human being looking back at you in the mirror.

Keep your chin up, buttercup. You are loved.

P.S. Do me a favor? Go look in the mirror. As you make eye contact with yourself, shout, scream, whisper, sing, or rap at least one thing about yourself that makes you proud.

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