September is National Suicide Prevention Month.
This isn’t something I typically write about. But.
One of the loves of my life, Steven LaMere, took his life over two and a half years ago.
We hadn’t spoken in many months, but he called me one month before making the decision to end his life.
I didn’t answer the call. He didn’t leave a message. I figured it was a pocket dial and sort of let it go.
When I heard that he had taken his life, this call, the one I didn’t follow up with, rang loud and clear inside of me.
I should have called him back.
In fact, I had a specific moment where I considered sending him a message just to make sure he was okay.
But, I got busy.
I figured it wasn’t wise to follow up with a love I was trying to move on from.
Bottom line—I let my head talk me out of my heart’s whisper to reach back out.
Maybe it would have changed nothing, but what I know for sure is that I would have felt better about me if I had followed up with him. I would be here today knowing that I did everything I could to be there for him. But I can’t say that because I didn’t and because I wasn’t.
So today, I want to invite you to take the call even from the “ex” you’re “trying” to get over.
Take the hard call, answer the difficult email, respond to the lengthy text.
Be there for the people you love—whether they’re currently active in your life or not. It won’t harm us to show up for each other. We might not have the answers, we might not be able to “do” anything—but simply taking the call shows we care.
Saying, “I love you, I’m sorry you’re going through this, how can I support you?” makes a difference.
And if you’re not loving life right now—first, I want you to know that those feelings are completely valid and understandable.
Life gives us all the things, doesn’t it? The joys, the pain, the celebration, the lockdown (whaaat?!), the love, the heartbreak—all the things.
But here’s the deal—together, we can ride through it. Together, we can do the hardest things we never thought possible.
So if you’re not into life right now, reach out to the person you love the most and say those words.
Ask for help.
Most of the time we’re too afraid to speak our most vulnerable pains and fears.
But speaking them and asking for support is the first step to overcoming whatever it is that we’re going through.
So, in honor of the National Suicide Prevention Month, please take the pledge with me:
Let’s make a pledge to stay, even when it’s ridiculously hard.
Let’s make a pledge to love each other beyond our labels and preconceived notions and ego.
Let’s make a pledge to transcend the forces of non-support and go higher into our true selves—together.
And let’s pledge to not leave until we call those we love to share our truth.
As part of the Pledge for Life, we pledge to reach out and call someone we love to share how we’re feeling before we take our life. We know that sometimes all it takes is knowing how loved we are to get through the hardest of times.
I promise to always answer that call, email, DM.
Please join me, and do the same. You never know the difference it can make.
In honor of Steven LaMere.