Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A Life Changing Moment

Larry and I were witnesses to a suicide in San Francisco yesterday. As we sat to eat our lunch by the window with a beautiful view of the city we saw a man standing out of a window on the 4th floor of the building in front of our view. At first we thought it was for a movie because we'd seen a movie crew up the street. Then I thought it was some wise guy trying to get attention. A prank. A joke. The man couldn't have been more than 25 with longer dark hair wearing only a blue pair of underwear. I thought, no way that cute guy is really thinking about ending his life. It was unimaginable to me. So I watched and Larry and I joked because in my mind it was just a silly prank. The crowd grew larger and the police arrived. I started to get a bad feeling but still couldn't imagine that this stranger would jump. Although this man is a stranger I feel like I experienced something monumental with him. I find myself longing to know his name, his story. Wanting to help, however late it may be. He stood there for about 10-15 minutes, while we sat and ate our burgers. I know I shouldn't feel guilt but I cannot help it. I know there is nothing I could have done. The crowd reacted to the jump and I quickly turned my head to look. How I wish I hadn't! It only took a second for my head to whip back and the tears to start to flow. It was so shocking and surreal at the same time. Most people responded as I did. But many, I think unable to place their emotion in that moment covered it with laughs and cheers. It was so confusing but I just think some things take a while for the brain to process. My body was shaking and for the past day I have not been able to let go of the horrific image.

I decided to write about it as a sort of therapy. I can tell it has started to help already. I am so blessed. There are some who have such unimaginable hardships. My biggest trial is having to wear a hideous red polo to work everyday. I have an amazing family and had a fantastic childhood. And most importantly, I have the gospel. I know my savior and feel his love for me everyday. I know that this life is a probationary state and that true happiness comes from righteousness. If only this man had known what I have known my whole life. If only he had known that our savior loves him just as he loves me his life could have been so different. Everyone always says that people who die are in a better place. I have often thought that for people who commit suicide, how could it be better because they will have to face judgement for that choice. However, I don't know of that mans pain but our savior does and he will be judged fairly. I do know that because my life has been so blessed, I will be held to a much higher level than others. I think I am a good person but I know I can be better in so many ways. Through this experience I am determined to learn and grow. To really see with an eternal perspective when faced with petty conflicts. To be very slow to judge the choices of others. To show more love, more compassion.


Kay Photography said...

kenny thats awful :( so sad, but you're right that we are so blessed to have the gospel and a little piece of eternal happiness and joy while trying to make it through this life.

Spencer and Sara said...

Ok that is so scary. I would have reacted the same way as you. How sad. I love you Kendall.

Courtney Bartlett Morris said...

Oh my gosh! That is such a bizarre and sad experience:( It's sad to think some people's lives are really that bad.

Dev & Di said...

Kenneth this is crazy!! I was shocked when I read it so I can even imagine actually being there.... we are so lucky to have the gospel though!

Da Bergs said...

Brittany told me about this on the phone today so I had to come and read it... I like you long to know his story, ache for his parents... life is hard... yes, I am SO glad we have the gospel!!!

Paige Archer said...

you are amazing kendall!!!!! I LOVE YOU MORE THAN I CAN EVER EXPRESS!!!! THANK YOU FOR BEING SUCH A WONDERFUL SISTER ALWAYS!!!!! we have been so blessed in this life to have such a beautiful family and such close relationships!!!! thank you for the great reminder to count our blessings everyday and not to let the small things distract us from the love our of Heavenly Father!!!! sure do love you so much!!!!! -paigey :)