P.S. I Love You, Farmingdale

Alecia Sclafani, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Valentine’s Day is primarily seen as a day to celebrate the love for a significant other. However, an extension to the day, P.S. I Love You Day, is a celebration of the love and support of everyone. The campaign was started by a girl, Brooke DiPalma, after losing her father to suicide. Raising awareness and celebrating the importance of everyone’s lives are the goals of this organization. It’s normally held on the second Friday of February, though with the snow day this year, the high school postponed the commemoration to Valentine’s Day. Pairing Valentine’s Day with P.S. I Love You Day allowed for additional love and awareness to flood the hallways at Farmingdale High School.

Walking through the hallways, it was difficult to not spot someone sporting a bright purple shirt. The shirts were sold the previous week to help further endorse the spirit of the day. Also to promote the day, students were shown a video a few days prior to the event. It shows Brooke DiPrima explaining her unfortunate situation, losing her father to suicide. The video stresses the importance of suicide prevention and treating others with kindness to brighten the darkest of days. Junior Greg Petralia said, “P.S. I Love You Day I think really helped people be informed of what this cause does and why it was formed,” and added that the video, “taught students of what P.S. I Love You Day is.” Selling the long sleeve shirts and showing the video were two effective methods of spreading the ideals of the day throughout the school.

When students entered the building early Tuesday morning, they were welcomed with bright purple post-it notes with positive messages doodled on them covering every locker. Various kind phrases like, “you are great!” and, “you can do this!” were scattered across the building, thanks to members of the Student Government Association, SGA. There was even a heart of post it notes covering the mirror in the girl’s bathroom in the Commons, which remained up all week long. Senior Julia DeAngelis felt, “The best part of the day was walking in and seeing all the post-it notes on everyone’s lockers. It was a very cute idea to brighten everyone’s day.” Everyone was feeling the love radiating from the simple but powerful gesture that managed to brighten nearly everyone’s day. SGA Activities Coordinator Gabby Cordi said of the decorating, “There was a lot of planning,” and that she “was at every meeting making posters and writing out post-its.” Despite the tedious effort it must’ve taken to write varying messages neatly, she asserted that “the best part of it all was decorating the school,” because “it made me feel good thinking about how I can make someone smile.” The post-it notes littered across lockers were only the beginning of the uplifting day.

The sea of purple washing over the school aided in lifting everyone’s spirits and contributed to a more positive vibe flowing through the halls. With everyone being in such a positive mood and also celebrating Valentine’s Day, it created the perfect storm of friendship and love. According to Julia DeAngelis, she noticed, “More happiness and kindness in the school than usual. It was a little different because it was on Valentine

’s Day. It may have even been better because there was a little extra love around.” Students paid extra mind to their friends and classmates, sharing more smiles and positive comments. While Greg Pertalia was conducting interviews in the Commons where flowers were being sold and pictures were being taken, he said that, “People were really nice about it and gave good messages.” It was as if the positive vibes were infectious, even if it was only for one Tuesday before a week long break.

However, the day is more than just wearing purple and being nice to one another on a surface level. To Julia, “P.S. I Love You Day helps me to see the good in people. It reminds me to give a little more love to everyone and to never put anyone down.” These are morals that are prominent in the hallways at Farmingdale, and should always flow during conversations in the hallways, rather than just for one day during the year. Gabby Cordi, a junior, agrees: “I have been surrounded by people with depression and suicide and the day just overwhelms me with happiness knowing the school wants to take the time to make someone smile, and that I was a part of the process to make that happen.” The day’s purpose is to reach out to everyone and validate their self worth, rather than letting everyone suffer in the dark. Despite being in the middle of winter, the day provides rays of sunshine across students and staff in the school, light and warmth that should not be taken for granted. Ideally, promoting positivity and kindness would always be a priority for each student, and P.S. I Love You Day is a great starting point. It serves as a reminder that everyone is important and deserving of kindness, no matter what.

* Photo courtesy of Mrs. Grant

* Video by Greg Petralia and Mackenzie Ghibaudi