Just before dawn one morning in June of 1986, I decided to end my life.
The trees, bushes and brush would give me plenty of privacy to do what I needed to do.
It was not a sudden decision. At least it didn’t seem so; I’d been on a psychological crash dive into darkness since 1977. The reasons are complex, and make for poor narrative, but I knew that my wife would not be particularly sad about my demise.
That was not the depression talking; it was that misbegotten a marriage. I consider it my nadir, the final manifestation of my nine year downward slide.
So, on that morning, I went to a nearby park to escape the loneliness that I could not imagine ever relieving any other way. The park was situated along a river. The trees, bushes and brush would give me plenty of privacy to do what I needed to do. If done right, it would not take long.
I sat on a rock along the riverbank as the day began, getting myself mentally ready. It was a clear, warm morning. I could hear insects buzzing and clicking as their day began. Dragonflies warmed themselves on stalks of grass. The sun glinted off the ripples and riffles.
From my right, a flight of large white birds came soaring along the river. Cattle egrets. They flew with no apparent effort, gliding just a few feet above the water. Silently, they passed by and receded downriver. Watching them go, I realized that there was still great beauty in the world, and that if I could just hang on a bit longer, maybe I could find some. I decided to go for breakfast.
My wife left me in August. In October, I found Gina.
A lot of things have happened in my life, but now I am mainly in it for Gina and the mountain biking.