I stood for 50 minutes yesterday talking to my new friend. They’re 22, study Drama, and we’re on a night out with other course mates. They felt a little out of place as they’re three years older, but they don’t make him feel bad for it. They nickname him ‘grandad’ which makes him (and they’re lecturers) laugh.
I told him I’m a music student, what I do outside of university, the general stuff.
Not once did he ask me why I was on the wrong side of the bridge and not once did I tell him. He didn’t once let go of my wrist. He had his friends ‘guarding’ us so no-one else would try to get involved, and he had one with 999 in his phone ready to dial.
He was the person I needed at that point. The person who helped and saved my life. The one who, when it was so cold I was violently shaking, ensured I wouldn’t fall by accident.
I’d called Samaritans, I’d stood outside the hospital doors for 20 minutes, and I’d given up. If you ask me the series of events that led up to it I don’t think I’d be able to tell you because I’m not sure there are any. I know the conclusive factor though: I was supposed to be in a rehearsal, and I couldn’t walk into the room.
Supposed to. It’s back again.
I couldn’t walk into the room. I don’t know why, I wasn’t late, I hadn’t forgotten anything, there was no reason.
But I couldn’t walk in. So I walked, talked, walked, stood, walked and ended up on a bridge where my new friend found me after ten minutes. You might be reading this and thinking “She wouldn’t have jumped, she’d been there for 10 minutes. It’s just for attention.” You might be right. I don’t know if I would have jumped because I didn’t get the chance to, but you know what? That’s not the point.
The point is a random stranger who I’ve never met before, halted a night out with his friends to save my life. He didn’t know me and he thought my life was worth saving. The seven people who walked past before him did nothing: I was nothing to them and nothing to me, but when they stopped that changed. Someone cared.
Someone always cares.