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Allison Zuckerberg

After my best friend died, I got this tattoo to remember her by. People often ask if I’m from San Francisco, but I’m actually from northern New Jersey. Hope was a friend from high school who died by suicide when I was in my first year of college. This bridge symbolizes a place that we used to go to in the next town over, where we would sit and talk about our lives. As it has been three, almost four, years since she died, this bridge has taken on new meaning for me since. It connects me to her from this world into the next and serves as a permanent reminder that I can make a difference in other people’s lives by reaching out. Another thing about the bridge symbol is that people may not know where people are in terms of their mental health: if they’ve walked the length of the bridge and are thinking to jump. It serves as inspiration to say hello to strangers, offer help to those in need, and even take care of my own mental health. However, I know that singular efforts are not enough for a healthcare reform. Moving forward, I want to participate and lead larger movements to bring awareness to the needs of vulnerable populations, such as college students, but others too. The placement of this tattoo has extra importance to me. I met my friend in marching band, and, as anyone in band knows, you step off with your left foot. So long as I put my best foot forward, I know that I’m capable of anything. My work has only just begun.

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