Seven days of the Omer, which is one week

I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart.
I am, I am, I am.

”The Bell Jar,” Sylvia Plath

On the inside of my left wrist is a tattoo that reads “I am, I am, I am.” If you know what to look for, you’ll also see a few faint scars that are the only physical reminder that I self-harmed during high school.

I don’t remember exactly where I was, but it was right before school started for the day. For whatever reason, I was feeling especially hopeless and I began to cut my wrist. When I finally realized what I was doing, I was terrified. I remember holding my wrist close to me, tears running down my face, as I hurried to my AP English teacher’s room. He was the only teacher I trusted at the time and when I got to his desk, I was barely holding it together. He saw my tears and opened his mouth to say something when I thrust my bleeding wrist out. He immediately got a paper towel to stop the bleeding and gently led me to the principal’s office. I distinctly remember him talking nonchalantly about something unrelated to distract me, but I don’t remember what happened once we got to the office.

I’ve never forgotten how kind he was to me and how he never judged me, even when I transferred out of that high school. He didn’t lecture or chastise me like some adults did, he understood that I didn’t need another adult telling me that I needed to think positively or smile more often or to lighten up, I needed an adult to help me. I never got to tell him how much his kindness meant to me at that particularly dark point in my life.

Thank you, Mr. C.

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