Dear Food Lion Cashier,
You don’t know me, but I was in your express lane today. You were about 5’ 10” with blonde short hair. You had kind, pretty blue eyes and a gentle, reluctant smile. I had the gallon of ice cream and the box of cones. I didn’t use my MVP card (and you didn’t ask, which is fine) and paid cash. When you took my money is when I noticed the criss-cross cuts on your inner forearm.
I wanted to say something, I really did.
But I wanted to make sure, so when you handed me my change I looked again. I pretty sure you noticed because you met my eyes and then looked away. I wanted to say so many things to you. I wanted to say “I’m sorry” or “Are you okay?” or “Do you need to talk?”, but I’m the guy with the ice cream, who am I to you?
I don’t claim to understand why you do it. Maybe the pain reminds you that you are alive. Maybe you think that you deserve to feel this kind of pain for some reason. Maybe you hate yourself and are working up to finally kill yourself. Maybe there are cacophony of reasons that deafen you every day. Like I said, I don’t claim to understand.
I do know one thing, it’s something I learned from Jenny Lawson (AKA The Bloggess). It’s just two little words but it’s a great piece of advice. It’s something I think you should know.
What ever reason you have to hurt yourself, that reason is wrong. That reason lies. You are a beautiful, young woman with great years ahead of you. Don’t listen to that voice that hurts you, it’s lying.
Next time I see you, and I hope there is a next time, maybe I’ll just say, “Depression Lies” and hope you want to talk. If not to me, to a friend, a relative or hopefully a therapist.