AFSP Walk Out of the Darkness

Combining all our donations including monetary, items for the silent auction, and the water we supplied to walkers, XP Fitness raised a total of over $1,000 for the National Association for Suicide Prevention today. THANK YOU to all who gave and/or joined us in the walk. 

There were several speakers at the event who were SO GRATEFUL for the support of the HHI community. In their speeches they made it clear that nothing could be more valuable than raising awareness in support of preventing suicide. 

Much of the money collected goes directly toward creating programs that help teachers recognize at risk students and have the necessary tools to intervene. 

It is not easy or inexpensive to raise the level of awareness we so badly need in our schools, workplace, and daily lives. The statistics make it very clear that suicide is very prevalent in our society and spans across all ages, income levels, and ethnicities. With the right measures in place, lives can be saved. 

And that is what today was all about. There was an overwhelming crowd in support. Hopefully all our efforts will have made an impact, even if it was just one life saved. 

On the walk I met and spoke with a woman was walking alone. She was near tears when I introduced myself and she told me that she lost a son to suicide ten years ago. It's not easy to comfort a person in pain especially from that level of loss, so instead of trying I asked her, what if anything made it easier for her to keep moving forward? She handed me a laminated 8x10 picture she was carrying. It was her son.

She told me that her son's name was Andy and that she so rarely has someone to talk to about him. So we talked about Andy for a bit. Her smile told me that keeping her son alive in her heart, and remembering him and speaking of him helps her every single day. As our conversation finished, she thanked me for saying his name and we parted ways. 

It is GOOD for everyone, especially the survivors of suicide loss, to talk about suicide and to say the names of those we have lost to it. 

If you personally feel depressed and have suicidal thoughts, know that you are not alone and this world wants you. There are people all around you who want to talk with you and help you get back on the path to joy. All you need to do is speak up. It's okay. Speak up and tell people closest to you- your family, friends, teachers, coaches, religious leader, or yes your trainer, and the help will find you. 

If you'd prefer to talk directly with a counselor, here is a link to the national suicide prevention hotline.
and their number is 18002738255. A trained counselor is available 24/7.