Cody--

Student Board Member (17)

I was scared; scared of the dark, scared of my own shadow, but more importantly, scared to speak out. Living in a state of constant fear and worry messed with my head. It changed who I was and shaped the mask I lived out of. As a child and even up into my early teen years, I was far too fearful to do much of anything that was not in my comfort zone. In order to cope with my fear and anxiety, I only stayed in that comfort zone. I never took risks no matter what the reward. It wasn’t until I found a real best friend and mentor that I began to experience a radical change in my character and personality. (I speak as if this were ages ago, but in reality it was only up until I was 14 where I met them). Through their loving and encouraging support (and a couple years time), I found a way out of my fear and anxiety as well as the deep depression I had slumped into. It took courage, bravery, and much coercing for me to come out of my shell-- and it wasn’t without a fair share of pain.  

 

One thing I’ve always had a passion for doing, however, is helping people and being an open ear to listen. Once in middle school, I was (and still am) absolutely fascinated with my friend’s stories. I would (and still do) listen for hours on end to my friend’s stories. In 7th grade, I had my first “run in” with self harm and suicide. I had never heard much on the topic and knew even less on how to deal with both my friends struggling with that and the hardship of watching friends I cared about go through suicide and self harm. That feeling of helplessness was a terrible one that I will never forget. I have never been a self harmer nor suicidal and can never attest to the feeling of being in such a place. However, the feelings I have are still vital and just as important. I wanted to make a difference in the lives of more than just the people in my direct circles of influence. Project Reasons has been a way of helping people and reaching out to them to let them know that they are not alone in this battle. But, not only are they not alone, they’re also here on Earth for a reason. Despite the current struggle, suicide and self harm is not the answer. We all have reasons to live, but sometimes those reasons might not be as apparent as they are to others. I hope that through Project Reasons, we can help those struggling find a reason to stay alive another day, everyday.