you turn on your video camera and sit on your bed, the noose hanging behind you. you start to explain why you’re doing this, why you want to be gone forever. you’re crying, and your face is tear-stained. you explain how writing a letter isn’t enough. you tell your parents it’s not their fault, you tell your family you’re sorry and you love them, but you can’t take it any more. living is too much for you. you turn off the camera, step onto the stool, put the noose around your neck, and cry. you wait for the right moment. you know once you kick the stool away, there’s no going back. your life will go. you will be gone. you move your feet, and kick them to the side. you’re gone. an hour later, your mom gets home from work, with your older brother and little sister who she picked up from school. your sister runs up the stairs to tell you how she got a gold star in class today, she knocks on your door and waits for an answer. nothing. she talks through the door to you, thinking you’re there. no reply. she opens to door and sees you hanging. she doesn’t know what’s happening to you, she doesn’t understand that you’re gone, she doesn’t understand why you’re gone, she doesn’t understand how life could be so bad you would want to die. she calls down the stairs for your mom, just as your dad gets home from a long, stressful day at work. your parents run up the stairs, worried by what your sister is saying. your brother follows them, scared and confused. your mom collapses in tears on the floor, your dad is in so much pain but he has to be strong for your family. he takes the video camera, and rubs your mom’s back, crying himself. your mom blames herself for being a working mom, and paying more attention to your little sister than you, for not making your favorite food when you asked, for not letting you go out when all your friends were. your dad calls the ambulance, panicking, trying to get the words out of his mouth. ‘my child committed suicide.’ he blames himself for working late at night, for going on business trips to far away places for weeks at a time, for not teaching you how to ride a bike, for being too busy to make it to the father’s day event at school. your older brother locks himself in his room for days, not coming out, listening to the voice mails you left him, reading the angry text messages you sent to each other when you were fighting. he blames himself for not being there for you, for not beating up the guys who hurt you, for not listening to your problems. at school the next day, your best friend is worrying about you. she doesn’t know where you are. she texts you 4 times, and calls you twice. just after her lunch break, they call the whole school together and announce your suicide. your best friend blames herself for hooking up with that guy you liked, for not giving the best advice, for not picking up the phone at 2am when you called, for putting her boyfriend before you that one time. everyone is sad that you’re gone. your favorite teacher, the boy that sits next to you in english, your vice-principal, your bus driver, your neighbour’s neighbour. they all can’t believe it. you’re gone. forever. the teacher that yelled at you for not handing in your homework? she blames herself. she makes herself sick sometimes. the boy that stole your lunch money that one time? he blames himself. he’s been diagnosed with severe depression. that group of girls that would always tell you your outfit was ‘so last year’? they blame themselves. they self harm at night. the boy that spitballed your hair in math class? he blames himself. he goes to the guidance counsellor every day for mental support. your funeral comes, your whole school, you whole neighbourhood, they all show up. your best friend makes a speech about how much she loved you, and still does. it moves everyone to tears. your parents leave out paper for everyone to write a note to you and put it in your coffin. all of them say ‘i’m sorry,’ or ‘i love you,’ or ‘i care.’ you said to yourself that nobody cared about you, that nobody would notice if you were gone. everyone notices. it’s not the same without you. your family won’t open your door. they won’t watch your video. they won’t talk about you, or they’ll just cry and remember how much they loved you, and miss you. at school, nobody will let any one else sit in the seats you used to sit at. people still hope that you’ll walk through the door one day, even though they know you won’t. nobody can convince them self that you’re gone forever. every one cares. every one misses you. every one loves you. so, put the razor down, put the rope away, put the gun back in the drawer, and never touch that thing again. you’re better than that and you have so much to live for. i love you.