A message from Scott:
Those of you who have heard me speak at your school or camp know that I start most of my lectures with the questions:
“Who are you?” and
“What are the words in your pockets?”
Here are some answers.
Place these words in your pockets when life gets difficult. Hold onto these words when you don’t know where to turn. Remember these words when you feel lost, alone and unloved.
The pictures were drawn by some teens from Bialik High School of Montreal. If you are inspired, draw me your answers, email them to me and I’ll post them here too!
I believe in you and I want you to stay alive.
I BREATHE. I BELONG. I AM ENOUGH.
I AM DESERVING OF LOVE AND WORTHY OF KINDNESS.
I HAVE A LIFE WORTH LIVING.
I HAVE A LIFE WORTH SAVING.
I BELIEVE THAT MY VULNERABILITY IS BEAUTIFUL.
I SEE AND NURTURE THE MIRACLE THAT I TRULY AM.
EVEN WHEN I ACHE AND CRY, I BELONG HERE.
EVEN WHEN LIFE HURTS, I CONTINUE TO HOPE.
EVEN WHEN IT SEEMS LIKE I’VE RUN OUT OF OPTIONS, I BELIEVE THERE ARE STILL OPTIONS.
I AM WILLING TO SUMMON MY COURAGE, EMPTY MY POCKETS OF SECRETS AND MEET MY TRUE SELF.
I AM WILLING TO OWN MY SECRET FEELINGS AND NEEDS AND HONOR THE INNER PAIN AND TORMENT.
I AM WILLING TO BE KNOWN BY OTHERS AND CHERISHED FOR WHAT OTHERS DISCOVER ABOUT ME.
I AM WILLING TO SIT IN THE CENTER OF MY SORROW AND CONFUSION AND KNOW THAT I STILL HAVE WORTH.
I AM WILLING TO EMPTY MY HANDS AND OPEN MY ARMS, UNDEFENDED FROM LOSS AND UNARMORED AGAINST JOY.
I AM WILLING TO ALLOW MY HEART TO BEAT FASTER AS I LEAVE A PART OF MYSELF BEHIND IN THIS THING CALLED “GROWING UP.”
I AM WILLING RISK LETTING MY HEART BREAK AS I WELCOME THE UNEXPLORED SELF JUST ABOUT TO ARRIVE.
I HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE LISTENED TO AND TAKEN CARE OF.
I HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW WHO AND WHAT I AM TO OTHERS.
I HAVE THE RIGHT TO EXALT IN SIMPLE JOYS.
I HAVE THE RIGHT TO SEEK HELP – ANY HELP THAT IS NEEDED.
I HAVE THE RIGHT TO ACCURATE AND COMPREHENSIVE SEXUAL HEALTH EDUCATION.
IF I HOOK UP WITH SOMEONE, I HAVE THE RIGHT TO NOT BE IGNORED THE NEXT DAY.
I HAVE THE RIGHT TO BE LOVED.
I GIVE MYSELF PERMISSION TO BE EXACTLY WHO I AM, WHERE I AM, AS I AM, RIGHT NOW.
I GIVE MYSELF PERMISSION TO LAY DOWN MY HARMFUL WEAPONS AND SEARCH FOR STRATEGIES THAT WORK BETTER.
I GIVE MYSELF PERMISSION TO FEEL ALL OF MY FEELINGS.
I GIVE MYSELF PERMISSION TO BE FAT, SKINNY, LONELY, SAD, SHORT, TALL, UNATHLETIC, DIFFERENTLY-ABLED, SHY, GAY, LESBIAN, BISEXUAL, TRANSGENDER, STRAIGHT, QUESTIONING OR CURIOUS ABOUT MY LIFE.
I GIVE MYSELF PERMISSION TO LAMENT THE ABSENCE OF A SEEMINGLY PERFECT LIFE AND ACCEPT THE LIFE I HAVE RIGHT NOW.
I EXIST WHETHER I FEEL ANGER, SORROW, FEAR, JOY, SHAME OR A COMBINATION OF MANY EMOTIONS.
I EXIST WHETHER I FEEL EMPTY, NUMB OR NOTHING AT ALL.
I EXIST IN POETRY AND IN PAIN.
I AFFECT OTHERS.
I AM MOVING AND PULSING THROUGH THE WORLD WITH MY SORROW AND WITH MY JOY.
I AM NORMAL AND I AM A CONTRADICTION.
I AM NOT ALONE.
I AM A CHAMPION, A YOUNG SOLDIER OF SURVIVAL IN A COMMON BATTLE, DEFENDING THE INNOCENCE OF SIMPLE JOYS AND FIGHTING FOR THE RIGHT TO BE EXACTLY WHO I AM. THERE IS ROOM IN THIS WORLD FOR ME. I DON’T HAVE DO ANYTHING TO DESERVE LOVE. I BREATHE. I BELONG. I AM ENOUGH.