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Sad

Sad

‘Are you ready to hold your baby?’ She takes a deep breath, sits up as straight as she can. We’re very careful.’: Child loss photographer reminds grieving parents ‘this little life mattered’

“The room is still, almost silent. I meet their beautiful baby, I hold their baby, talk to their baby. All while taking a mental assessment of how much posing I can do. I ask who he got his beautiful wavy hair from, or his button nose or long toes. I talk, but not too much to overwhelm anyone. I work gently, efficiently. I capture every single detail. No one wants this. Their child existed. Their child was so loved, and so wanted.”

‘I was given a choice. ‘Be yourself or be a teacher. You can’t do both.’ I’d been outed by my coworker.’: Transgender teacher ‘stays positive’ despite criticism, says transition ‘doesn’t change who I am’

“I approached the school in a new dress I was so happy about. I felt strong, confident, and absolutely terrified. I made my way to the library for a meeting. All the tables filled, yet no one joined me at mine. Teachers gathered to decide where to go for lunch. I asked if I could join. ‘We’d rather you didn’t.’ Broken, I returned to my classroom, closed the door, and cried.”

‘That’s you!’ my wife said. I watched the TV screen carefully. Suddenly, my whole life made sense. I am autistic.’: Man discovers he’s autistic at age 32, now ‘happy, flourishing’

“Growing up, my mom always slapped me when I acted ‘weird,’ calling me ‘broken.’ I gave up on being loved and turned violent. I just felt angry all the time. I stopped caring about everything, especially myself, and contemplated suicide. Then, I met Sylvia. She understood me, she saw past the self loathing and the anger. She saw the real me, the loving me. She broke down the barrier I had put up to protect myself. I wanted to change for her. I wanted to deserve her.”

‘You have a better chance at winning the lottery than surviving this tumor.’ I was ready to give up.’: Woman survives ‘rare tumor’ despite all odds, now a ‘happy, free’ amputee

“My leg was a dead weight. I asked to have it removed and I was told it was ‘too drastic.’ I electively removed it myself and my life did a 180. I went from thinking ‘this is the best it’s going to get’ to ‘this is the best decision I’ve ever made.’ My only regret? I didn’t do it sooner.”

‘I bought a rope and began to hang myself.’ I was living a fantasy of mine. I didn’t see myself living past 30.’: Young woman survives addiction, multiple suicide attempts, says suffering has been her ‘greatest teacher’

“I was addicted to the act of numbing myself from the anxiety. I was so desperately seeking attention outside myself, not knowing I needed to learn to give it to myself. I have tried everything in my power to end my life. And, guess what? Nothing worked. Hi, I am still here! Life has seasons, just like us. What’s a sunny day without the dark clouds and rain?”

‘They’re a burden to society. You’ve got a lot of nerve spending time with them.’ I didn’t understand how others could think that.’: Woman ‘dedicates life’ to helping those with Down syndrome, says they’re living proof ‘pure love exists’

“No one told me my cousin had special needs. I had no clue how hard life would be for him and how cruel people could be. People stared, felt ashamed of his presence. I was struggling to understand why it was so difficult for my peers to treat all people like…well, people. My Down syndrome friends taught me how to be myself, and how to love.”

‘I want to live in my parents’ basement with 13 kids and no husband,’ said 3-year-old me. One part is true. Babies, and lots of ‘em!’: Woman shares emotional battle with Endometriosis, knows she’ll someday ‘be a mama’

“I dreamt of the day I’d turn in my baby dolls for the real deal. Fast forward 23 years, and here I am. Married to the man of my dreams. Our home is full, but our arms empty. We wanted the big family, sleepless nights, poopy diapers. We wanted it. So, we tried. And tried. After 6 months of negative tests, I knew something was off. They found 2 masses on my ovaries the size of a lemon and a golf ball.”

‘Please, when I wake up, change me into a boy.’ I’d make deals with God and wake up excited. Nothing changed.’: Transgender man finally ‘at peace,’ loves who he sees ‘looking back in the mirror’

“Growing up, there was this football field behind my house. I’d go there and lie down in the middle of the it, looking up at the sky and begging God to strike me with a lightning bolt. And just change me. Change my body. Every day I did this, and woke up sobbing. I didn’t have a word for how I felt. I knew I was attracted to women. But I also knew I felt like a boy trapped in a girl’s body.”

‘This morning, your son died. You stare at the ceiling, hoping your nightmare will be over. I know.’: Mom pens haunting letter to her ‘past self’ warning of grief she’s about to endure

“Right now it feels hopeless. As you hold your lifeless baby in your arms, you’re silently pleading for a miracle you know won’t come. You’re aching, screaming inside. Every tear that falls on his still face feels like a piece of your soul trying to seep life back into him. Every breath you take feels like betrayal. How can you, when he is not. I know.”

‘Please Mom, I don’t want to leave. I promise I’ll be good. I don’t like myself very much.’: Sister’s heartbreaking tribute to her late big brother who society deemed ‘the bad kid’

“I’d watched life treat my brother Glen so unfairly. I wanted so badly for something to go right for him. One night, he was extremely upset. My father picked my mom and I up. Glen called us to see where we were, and I still remember her last words to him. ‘We’re giving you space for the night, but we want to help you, Glen.’ The next morning, we were greeted by my dog at the front door. She was crying.”

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