To the person on the Smith Avenue bridge yesterday afternoon,
I’m sorry for being annoyed that the bridge I needed to cross to get to my car to the dealership was closed. I’m sorry that I was annoyed an entire bridge was blocked off for what seemed like only a minor accident because none of the cars blocking the bridge seemed that damaged. Or damaged at all, as I got closer. I’m sorry because as I was forced to take a last minute right turn where I needed to go straight was when I saw you hanging over the wrong side of the bridge.
I saw your blonde hair. I’m pretty sure it was blonde, anyway. It was sunny. There was a traffic pile up and accumulating gawkers crossing the street to pay attention to. Add in a double take of “oh my god, is that a person?!? OH MY GOD THAT *IS* A PERSON” and the immediate sense of gut wrenching sadness and sickness that floods into you. Suddenly, detailed driving becomes extremely difficult.
I’m sorry that you ended up on a beautiful bridge on a beautiful spring day with the beautiful skyline of a beautiful city beside you and you couldn’t feel any of it. I’m sorry that you were alone. I’m sorry that you didn’t feel like you could ask for help, or that when you did you didn’t get what you needed.
I can’t tell you I know what it feels like. I thought I knew sadness, and I thought I knew loneliness, but never to depths that deep. I can’t imagine that pain. I can’t tell you it’s going to be okay. Without knowing your circumstances, they just seem like empty words. But I hope you find someone you trust who can. I can’t tell you it will get better, as much as I have to believe it will, for my own sake as much as yours.
I can tell you that you have been on my mind ever since. I can tell you that I went back to the bridge about 90 minutes later and it was business as usual rather than blocked off by tape and rescue swimmers, so I took that to mean you were safe for the time being. I can tell you that I didn’t sleep much last night, and when I did you were there, too. I can tell you that you’ve got people who saw you yesterday, people who you will never meet, hoping you find peace. Hoping that even if that’s all the good you have in your world right now, it’s enough until you find more.