Ever since I was younger, I thought tattoos were a bad thing. I think it was mostly because the Jewish religion stated that if you had a tattoo, you could not and would not be buried in a primarily Jewish cemetery. And friends in my Jewish youth group were entirely against tattoos, saying that it was just like the Holocaust and they had no choice but to get tattooed with numbers. Why would someone want to do that as their own choice?

But as I aged and started to think for myself, I realized that tattoos were more than just a needle to the skin. More than a cool thing to have on your body. They are a permanent piece of art that meant something to someone. Once I got this mindset, I started to think of ideas that I might want on my skin. What was something that meant so much to me that I wanted it to be apart of me forever?

It wasn't until my junior year of high school that I started to become heavily involved with the campaign to erase the stigma of mental health. This was after I had been through hell and back with anxiety and depression. It made me realize how much these mental illnesses were pushed under the rug.

The passion I had was fiery, and it was prominent. When I found out about "Project Semicolon," I became obsessed. I wanted the bags, the sweatshirts, everything. But most importantly, I wanted this critical meaning tattooed on me. I wanted a constant reminder that I needed to keep going and continue to write my story. I needed to continue writing my novel of happiness, helping people, and living, most importantly.

As I continue through my college career and work towards having my therapy practice, I will proudly wear this artwork on my skin and remind everyone going through the same thing as me that things do get better with time.

"You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have."