A Nova Scotia Artist & Author

A Nova Scotia Artist & Author

What Stands Out Now

He used the crosswalk.

Today I drove the road again, as I do several times a week. On New Year’s Eve, 2012, it was where I helped save a life. I haven’t talked about it much, but each time I see the crosswalk, I remember.

He was tall and his pants bagged down. Nothing surprising given today’s “fashion” crisis. At first I thought he was having difficulty crossing the street because of his sagging pants – really. Then I saw the bottle and the stagger took on a new meaning.

It was cold. Bitterly so.

It was early afternoon and I was on my way home from the grocery store to prepare dinner for my family. He crossed the road and headed down the path toward the lake. His coat flopped in the wind.

He was young. Twentyish.

I called 911 and waited. By the time the police car arrived, he’d slipped from view. Although I had watched from a distance, I didn’t follow him. I was afraid he’d be violent if confronted. The officer listened to my description¬†and set out down the path.

I continued on my way.

A couple of hours later the officer called to give me an update. The young man had been quickly found and immediately went into alcohol induced seizures. Given the cold temperature and the young man’s condition, the officer said the outcome would have certainly been different had I not stopped to make the call bringing the police and ambulance.

It sobered me…and I don’t drink.

A few weeks later my husband took our children sledding near the lake. Someone randomly mentioned a young man who’d been rescued on New Year’s Eve day. Their story included him actually going into the water – something I hadn’t known. Apparently the young man suffered from addictions and mental illness. My husband listened but didn’t say anything about my involvement.

He used the crosswalk. 

That’s what stands out now. In spite of everything, he sought to safely cross the road. It may not seem like much but it is enough for me to believe he wanted to live beyond that day.

Sometimes we face impossible circumstances. You will never know my deepest pain and I will never know yours.

The crosswalk.

Believe for your tomorrow…



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