What an honor this episode was. Not to take away from any of our previous guests, but this one I was really hoping for and was so excited when we got it. Jamie Tworkowski is a Brevard County native. He went to Satellite High. He's surfed for most of his life. He loves Brevard. And seeing how he's now helping the world, Jamie is without a doubt the most genuine human I think I've ever met.
So what's the story about "To Write Love On Her Arms"? Well, first of all we need to discuss one thing first and that's mental health and the prevention of suicide. According to the American Foundations for Suicide Prevention, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death in the U.S. and on average there's 129 suicide deaths a day in our country. These are just a few of the STAGGERING numbers that suicide is an epidemic in our country and within our culture. Mental health issues that can lead to possible suicide need to be addressed. Whether a traumatic situation has affected you, if you're a solider returning from war and suffering from PTSD, or even if you just feel lonely and think no one cares about you...the truth is YOU MATTER! WE NEED YOU! And everyone is here for you. That's what "To Write Love On Her Arms" is. They are here to help, to listen, and to let anyone suffering from depression, mental illness, addiction, or self-injury that it's going to be okay and help is out there.
Jamie's story started back when MySpace was at the forefront of social media. And it started with a post, a story, about how a friend of his was dealing with depression and suicidal thoughts. From there t-shirts were made, a book was written. From that, a screenplay and a movie made. Now, "TWLOHA" reaches a global audience and hosts concerts, fun runs, and events all over to help raise money and awareness to not just suicide prevention and addition treatments. Now, "TWLOHA" also has teamed up with other amazing organizations like "The Trevor Project", a non-profit created to help the LGBTQ community with the struggles of coming out, or societal problems.
I know I've gone on a bit about TWLOHA and that's only because I myself have had my own issues with depression, alcohol, and the abuse of alcohol through depression. If I hadn't reached out for help. If I hadn't sought counseling and sought out therapy, I honestly don't know where I'd be today. It made me stronger. It reaffirmed in my confidence. And it reminded me that I matter. I very strongly urge anyone reading this; if you think you're alone. If you think drugs or alcohol are helping you through your hard times. If you think the world is better off without you. I can tell you that it's false. Drugs and alcohol aren't helping and we need you here.
Without further delay, here's Jamie Tworkowski and 'To Write Love On Her Arms' "Brevard County Story":
Such a great time getting to know Jamie and his organization. Their headquarters are really just right in Downtown Melbourne, across from Mustard's Last Stand. You can go in there whenever you want. Meet the people. Donate. Purchase some merchandise. Anything to help is always greatly appreciated.
Okay...so now, let's go to a happy place and talk food from Ole! Yummmmmm is the word of the day with this one. You'll see their Bang Bang Shrimp pasta. Ole's take on the famous dish and yeah my brain is telling my stomach I want this again! Plus, for me, I washed it down with their 'skinny girl' margarita...it's 100% organic and was an amazing pairing with the shrimp!
If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, addiction, or anything similar please reach out by calling the suicide prevention hotline at 1-(800)-273-8255 or text "TWLOHA" to 741-741. And honestly, if you ever need anyone to talk to I'll be there for you. I've shared my full story with the public for the very first time on this episode and it was scary but I'm glad I did. I've told select friends, relationships, and in group settings what happened but never in a public forum like this podcast. So with that being said, if I can do it so can you. And if you need help, I'll gladly take your hand and help you.
A final thanks to Jamie and everyone over at "TWLOHA"! You all are doing amazing things and helping so many people. The world needs more humans like you all. Attitudes among humans need to be more like yours. I truly and inspired and in awe at each and every one of you for working so hard every day in the face of so much darkness. The positive spirits and uplifting attitudes you all show is remarkable.