Every Thursday for five weeks now, I’m going to release one new part of a story from my own life that came to have a great impact on me. The story is about Simon, a guy I got to know a while ago (don’t worry, you will find out who he is). Before you continue reading I want to give you a heads-up if you’re sensitive, though. The story could get pretty heavy. However, I made it through and so should you.
I’m going to do my best to give you an idea of my relationship with Simon as similar to mine as possible. Below you find the first part of the story: The Boy No One Could Help. I hope you find it interesting!
Part One: When I First Met Simon
Some time ago, a friend of mine asked me if I knew any available apartments in the city. A friend to him was looking for a new accommodation, and I promised to help. Finding nothing, I felt like I needed to turn to this friend of my friend that was looking for the apartment and tell him I hadn’t found anything. In 30 seconds he had already answered: “It’s okay, I found one last week.” I was happy to hear that. As a goodbye, I told him that I was glad for him and that maybe we’ll meet some time. In my world, that was more of a polite way to end a conversation than a suggestion of us actually meeting, but Simon interpreted it differently: “Really? It would be so nice to meet you! I don’t go out very much and I don’t have that many friends.”
Well, I have a heart, so I couldn’t exactly turn him down. Although, I didn’t feel like meeting a foreign guy alone just like that, so I invited him to come to church. You see, every once a week, my church were arranging language studies for newcomers. This time, I thought that would be perfectly suitable.
If you ever have met young men from the middle east, you probably know that they generally aren’t too tall. Actually, comparing them to men where I live, they’re rather small – but not Simon. Don’t get me wrong, Simon was not fat. He was just bigger than I was used to. His self-confidence didn’t quite match, though. Luckily, he had told me he was a bit shy before we met so that I didn’t need to expect anything else from him.
I went to welcome him at the entrance. He knew it was me. I invited him to play cards with me and my friends, which he objected to at first, but eventually we all sat down. He didn’t say much, so it was a little awkward, but I figured we would get over it soon. A few rounds, and then we’d all be like friends! No? Unfortunately, it didn’t quite work out as I had hoped. The more people (not to say children) filled the church, the noisier it got, and before I knew it Simon had raised from his chair. “I’m going to the room over there”, he said. “I think it’s more quiet there”.
I thought I lost him. He was bored and he regretted that he had decided to come, and I was the one who had told him that it would be fun. The least I could do was to come after him and see if he was okay, so I did. I found him in the corner of the couch in the mentioned room where he sat on his own watching some other guys playing pool. I sat down next to him, and all of a sudden he started talking. In fact, that was the moment I realized that Simon was a real chatterbox. He just talked and talked, about his life in the past and about plans in the future. I felt like he told me everything. It was not like anything I’d heard before, though. Most people I knew were dreaming about traveling, starting college and getting an own apartment or a nice job where they could make tons of money. But not Simon. He had only one thing in mind that he knew that he wanted to do for sure. That was to return to his home country and kill himself. You see, Simon was sick of this life, and not like you hear people around you complaining over their sucky lives that actually aren’t as bad as they make it sound. Simon was REAL sick of living. And he was gonna end it, as soon as he had the chance.
I had struggled with those things before. Not that I’d had suicidal thoughts myself, but it was not the first time I heard someone I knew wanting to leave this planet. Difficult is not enough to describe how it is to try to get somebody change their mind about it. It’s like whatever I say, it’s not something that they haven’t heard before. They have the answers prepared already: “It won’t get better”, “It’s not worth trying” “Nobody wants me here, I will always be a left out!” But I don’t have anything else to say either, so I always feel like it’s worth giving it a shot. Simon would never buy that, though, I could see that. I had never met anyone as ruined as him before.
Nor had I met anyone as lonely as Simon before. He didn’t have any friends, and he nearly didn’t meet any people at all since the depression made it impossible for him to go to school. He pretty much sat at home starring into his wall, as he expressed it, day in and day out. And in the night, as he couldn’t sleep, he’d go out to forget about the misery for a few hours as the alcohol would sweep his memories away. The memories from a previous life had truly started to haunt him, now that he had so much time to think. What I noted was that while talking to me, he seemed to forget about all that for a while, though. What if he just needed to talk?
Apparently, again I thought it was worth giving it a shot. Before we left the couch and said goodbye that afternoon, Simon and I had decided to meet and go for a walk some time, which eventually turned into a routine. I didn’t mind, though. If a few hours a week of my time would make Simons life just a little bit better, I thought it was the right thing to do. Besides, who was I if I couldn’t even spend one or two afternoons a week to take a walk?
What I didn’t know was that these “walks” would come to affect me more than I first was willing to believe, and that I actually only was making Simons life worse. ♥︎