How We Can Prevent Suicide

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Is there a Millennial who survived teenage angst without Linkin Park?

The world is currently mourning the loss of the talented Chester Bennington. I am, too. And, ironically, last week I completed suicide prevention training.

The question feels as urgent as ever: How can we prevent suicide?

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The Ugly Years

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Just before I graduated high school, I got this amazing idea: chop off all of your hair (think Mandy Moore c. 2003). Ashamedly, I did not have Locks of Love in mind. No, I was entirely selfish.

I wanted a new start.

You see, hair has always been my calling card. I have never dyed or treated my hair and somehow – by the blessing of God – I maintained golden locks for the first three decades of my life.

My mother’s experience, however, would foreshadow my own: blonde until babies. And, right on time, I gradually lost my sun-kissed signature hair in the years following childbirth.

But it was impossible for me to predict the other changes that were simultaneously emerging – the widening hips, the spider veins, and the wrinkles.

The ugly years, without my consent, had arrived.

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Deep Waters

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It all began with a phone call. The climax, that is.

Unsurprisingly, my husband and I had forgotten to re-enroll ourselves in a health insurance plan for the upcoming year. It was approximately 4:48 p.m. this past Friday when my husband desperately took action to beat the deadline. He called me with an urgent tone to obtain our daughter’s social security number in order to complete the process.

For the average person, such a request seems minor; to the mother on the verge of an emotional breakdown, however, this is enough to wage a war.

Where is her card? Oh, no, I can’t find her card…

[Cue wailing newborn and insert curious, no-personal-space toddler here]

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