I have been turning over the idea of a podcast addressing suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts, and suicide completion for some time, but my internal voice kept saying to me,
“One does not simply record a podcast on this topic. You are no expert. You have very little experience. Keep your mouth closed.”
What does your internal voice say to you about this topic? What internal wrestlings come up for you when you hear the term “suicide”?
I know I am not the only one with inner wrestlings here. How do we begin the conversation? How do we open safe places to talk about hard stuff? How do we love well about something so dark?
I do believe it’s time. It’s time to start more conversations and say hard words. They will come out imperfect. We do not need to be experts to ask God hard questions, to ask people difficult questions and to speak about what we don’t understand with honesty about our ignorance, seeking to grow, and learn, and most importantly save lives.
I don’t have answers. I don’t have a strong connection to this topic beyond being a social worker who has seen too much hurt, too much pain come into this world from hopelessness, loss of life, and grief. I’m also a mom, a wife, a friend, a neighbor. Every person in my sphere is valuable to me. I can’t imagine losing them. I want the child in my house, the kids in our schools, the veterans in our communities, the members of my church, the checker at my grocery store to know that they matter and this world would be missing something without their presence.
I think the only way to get there is to talk about hard things–
to say the word suicide out loud,
to say sadness,
and struggle … out loud,
and to couple those words with hope, life, value, new day, tomorrow, together, and help.
Last month, I was introduced to someone else who wants to talk about hard things and bring hope to the middle of them – student and hip-hop artist, Brandon Hamilton. His artist name is Tranzlucent. You can find him by that name on YouTube and social media. Check out his work! I love when someone with a passion for their art form also uses it to share a message that matters. For today’s podcast Brandon, along with Joshua Mertz, teacher at Concordia Lutheran High School, joins me to talk about sharing hope, as well as changing the culture in our schools and our communities. What if we shared one another’s pain more often? What if we let in some light?
Hear Brandon’s song, One Last Breath, then join the conversation in the podcast:
Listen to the Podcast:
Find help, learn about identifying suicide risk factors, and glean from all kinds of resources here:
Find the lyrics for Brandon’s song and other resources for individuals and schools in the show notes:
Today, let’s enter this hard topic together, carry the weight together, and see hope, life, and light … together.