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To Write Love On Her Arms

To Write Love On Her Arms is a nonprofit organization I’ve been familiar with for about 2 years, but in the last year have become involved with. A few months ago I became the secretary of  Bradley University’s UChapter of TWLOHA. This group has had such an impact on my life.

TWLOHA started because of a young woman, Renee Yohe was addicted to drugs and alcohol and self injured. She went through a life of pain. When her friends took her to a rehabilitation center she was denied admittance because she had carved the words “FUCK UP” into her arm. The friends then took her in, and watched over her as her wounds healed enough. To help with bills they started a fundraiser that went further than they could ever imagine. Friends started selling tshirts with the phrase “To Write Love On Her Arms” on them, and they started a myspace page. Some friends in Switchfoot and Anberlin were some of the first to wear these tshirts. And from there… they took off.

Finally, anyone who had ever dealt with depression, addiction, self injury, eating disorders had a place to turn. They finally knew they weren’t alone. TWLOHA was there to push those people in the right direction and get help, it told them that their life DID matter, and that their story did too.

After graduating high school in a town smaller than many could imagine, I moved to a larger city for college. I was only about an hour away from home, but the changes were still enormous. I went to a place where I didn’t know anyone. It was scary, and the first year was the hardest… Trying to find friends, finding things to do, classes were different, tests were harder… I had final exams. It was hard to deal with at first, I was trying to find out who I really was. All through out elementary and high school I was around my twin sister, and trying to be like her. I was trying to be who I thought everybody wanted me to be. I got to college and suddenly didn’t have to do that anymore, but that made me more lost than ever. Its easier to be who people want you to be than to actually figure out who you are.

Needless to say, I slipped into a depression and did some things I’m not exactly proud of. Once I was in that downward sprial it has been hard to get out of. As a junior now, I have my good friends, and I know what I’m doing. But I still have days I’d rather not get out of bed, some days I’d rather just runaway. But my sophomore year I found TWLOHA. The people there were great, and gave me hope. Hope to be happy and content with my life, hope in my future, and hope in other people. It gave me the courage to go to counseling and get a job that will give me experience for when I do graduate. I’m not perfect. It is a start though.

TWLOHA showed me that life is a process. A process you have to work every day at. It showed me that everyone needs someone. Now being apart of this organization I just hope to help others out, maybe people that are feeling the same way I have and still do at times. I strongly suggest everyone visits twloha.com and read their Vision, and Mission Statement. Ive read it 50 times already and still like to go there on days to read it again. They also have really sweet merch.

“The vision is the possibility that your best days are ahead.
The vision is the possibility that we’re more loved than we’ll ever know.
The vision is hope, and hope is real.
You are not alone, and this is not the end of your story.” -twloha.com

With Hope,
Kelsey.

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