Walking on Eggshells

Dear Sir,

I wish I could say for sure that it was an accident – I’m not sure why, but I really believe that would make it better.  I think it’s because you would seem less selfish that way.  They don’t publish the non-accidents, though – like it might give someone an idea.  Someone like you, perhaps.  You weren’t in the newspaper.  I googled you.

I can’t and won’t try to imagine what must have been going on with you for this to have been the alternative you chose.  It must have been horrible.  I just wish you’d taken the time to imagine the consequences for those around you.  I wish things hadn’t gotten so horrible for you, but mostly, I wish you’d been able to step back and take a look at the future, beyond your choice.

Did you think of the driver, before you took that last step?  You might not have known that this driver is unlikely to ever go back to work after that.  Most, if not all, spend the rest of their lives on disability after going through that kind of nightmare.  You forced a complete stranger to blow out the unhappy flame of your existence – that’s not the kind of thing someone gets over.

What about the people who saw you?  Saw you close your eyes, look up and walk forward?  Were you too busy looking forward to look around?  You might have picked a less busy time of day, but that’s no excuse.

And the people who saw what remained?  Hollywood might numb people somewhat to violence, but not enough for this.  I wish you’d been able to think of this, make a better decision.

I wish that you had found a less final alternative.  It sounds selfish, but I wish I’d driven downtown.  I wish we hadn’t stopped for dinner before heading home.  I wish we’d taken the streetcar instead.  I wish SO MUCH that the man who opened the subway car door for us had opened one of the other two doors, instead of that one.  I wish I hadn’t looked back.  I really wish I hadn’t looked back.

I hope it was worth it – that you’ve found the happiest ending you could.  But I also hope you are in some way able to feel some compassion for the strangers you left behind.  The ones who walked, horrified, across the blood – your blood – spattered across the tiles, who looked back and saw what remained of the life you didn’t think was worth keeping.  I hope you feel guilty about the fact that you left behind strangers who saw you make your choice, saw you look up and take that step.

We don’t know each other, and we never will.  You made your choice on Saturday.  You left half an empty shell on the platform.  I looked back and left a little bit of my happiness.  I haven’t made it through a day since then without crying.

My condolences to your loved ones, and everyone you left behind.


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  1. OMG how horrible! Are you okay? Is there anything I can do for you? (((HUG)))

  2. Gosh, that is just sad all the way around.

  3. What an awful thing to happen: this letter expressed it so well. I would feel precisely the same way. Really sorry you had to be part of this: hope you are ok.

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