I love art, including sketching with colorful pencils and making music. Drawing and music often help me feel less overwhelmed. When I was younger, people around me sometimes set off difficult feelings, like the kids at school who bullied me or when my biological mom abused me. 


When I was 10, I wrote a suicide note and gave it to a friend at school. She showed it to the teacher, who contacted my dad. He worried. The school recommended Children’s National Hospital. The people there were nice and said I should stay in the adolescent psychology unit for a couple of weeks to get my mind together. 


I was scared and nervous. I missed home and cried a lot, especially in the middle of the night. One of the nurses noticed that drawing and coloring helped me cope. She made sure I had supplies. I also did art therapy with other patients and an art therapist. Making art helped me express my feelings when I didn’t have the words. I was really mad. But as I left my emotions on the paper, I felt better. I filled a lot of sketchbooks.


Even though it was hard being there, I felt like the staff understood me. Therapy helped and I made friends. I felt safe and less alone. It felt good to know that there are professionals who would make sure I was OK.


Before Children’s National, I was in a dark, cold and scary place. I was lonely. Now, there’s so much I want to do. I want to help others who might be feeling low. I want to play the violin. I want to be an entrepreneur. There’s light and warmth in my life and always room for more.


A young patient at Children's National Hospital.

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A young patient at Children's National Hospital.