I owe my life to hockey.

It keeps me breathing. It keeps me alive. It keeps me happy. It keeps me passionate.

Patrice Bergeron taught me that I am strong enough to keep going. If he can play in the stanley cup finals with a broken rib; punctured lung; and separated shoulder, then I can get out of bed every day and battle through the everyday stress of having been sexually assaulted.

Phil Kessel, Josh Harding, and Olli Maata taught me to always be strong and positive, no matter what battle we may be fighting.

Rick Rypien, Derek Boogaard, Wade Belak, and Terry Trafford taught me that it is okay to need help and that we should always seek help when we need it. So many people care even though we may not know it. RIP.

Shawn Thornton taught me that it is essential to always stand up for yourself, your family, and your friends. 

Jaromir Jagr taught me that age means nothing when your heart is 100% in it. 

The Portland Pirates taught me that I can find a home and a family by just being passionate about a local sports team. 

 erikkarlsson65 taught me that I need to be kind to myself no matter what. 

And finally, hockey as a whole taught me that I am surviving and I will survive; that a community can come together to support you and/or thousands of other people; that I can be happy and passionate. 

Hockey taught me that there is hope. 

Thank you hockey for always being there for me when I couldn’t be there for myself.