I sat at my kitchen table, the blinds closed, my dark brown hair falling in my face. A knife lay on the table along with a bottle of pills. I picked up the knife and nicked my finger, watching the red blood drip to the floor in tiny drops. There went some of the pain, little bits, now red raindrops on the wooden floor. Oh, to have all the pain leave and to settle peacefully into utter blackness where I can feel no more pain, where all the red drops of blood in my body are pooled outside, leaving me with no feeling, no life. Oh, to just have this horrible existence of mine be over and done with prematurely. It's all I ever wanted since that accident, since the divorce, since the pain began.
Slowly, more blood ran to the floor, more life fading out of me, more pain leaving me. It would all be that peaceful blackness soon. I opened the bottle of pills and took a few, adding to my already muddled state of mind. As I positioned the knife to draw more blood from my wrist, the doorbell rang. Swearing internally, I continued toward the blackness, ignoring it. It rang again, then twice, more persistently. Then a pounding came and shouting. It was an unrecognizable female voice, but she was insisting on making someone come to see what she wanted, so I rolled down the sleeve to my shirt and went to answer the door.
I swung it open with the one arm that wasn't cut and bleeding and came face to face with a girl about my age, maybe a year or two older than me. "What?" I asked impatiently.
"I'm lost," she explained, pointing to her car. "Can you tell me how to get to Ravios Street?"
I stared at her coldly, wishing she would just leave me alone. After all, she didn't care any more than anyone else did. "I don't know of any street by that name. I'm busy right now. Ask someone else," I said, more harshly than I intended to say.
"There is no one else in this place. You're the only one home on this street. Let me come in and look at a map."
"No. I said I was busy," I said, preparing to shut the door in her face.
She seemed to sense my intentions and braced her hand against the door. "You don't understand, sir. This is urgent. I need directions," she said, forcefully pushing her way into the house.
Forgetting the burning pain in my wrist at her persistence, I grabbed her arm with my bloody hand and tried to shove her out the door. When she saw the dark red print it left on her white shirt, she gave me a curious look and said, "Are you alright, sir? That wound looks serious."
I was about to give her a harsh reply and instead stood motionless, feeling faint and nauseated. It was probably the effect of the pills and I leaned helplessly against the wall. I glanced at the woman, who was intently studying me, probably trying to figure out what was wrong. I didn't want to die, now. I knew someone cared. She was almost radiating concern.
The woman saw the change on my face and rushed me into the kitchen, immediately coming upon the bottle of pills and the bloody knife laying on the table and the pool of blood on the floor. She had obviously connected two and two and I felt her shove me over to the sink and gag me so I would vomit up the pills I had swallowed.
While she was supporting me, I could faintly hear her talking to someone on the phone. Probably 911, I thought. I could see red in the sink along with the other liquids and quickly glanced at my wrist. I saw what I had done to myself and started crying.
I immediately felt a soothing hand on my back and a supportive arm helping me sink down to the floor.
A soothing voice followed. "You'll be okay. I promise," she said, wrapping my wrist tightly in kitchen rag. "See, the bleeding is stopping already and you got most of those pills out of your stomach. The ambulance will be here momentarily and you'll be okay."
I responded with more tears, feeling strangely unashamed to be sobbing in the arms of a strange woman who had walked into my life and saved it only moments ago.
When the ambulance did arrive, I wasn't too conscious for most of the chaos that probably ensued. All I remember from it is that the woman, whose name I didn't even know, was by my side the entire time.
Later that week, when my mom had recovered from the initial shock of my attempted suicide and I was feeling better, I saw the woman one last time. I was falling asleep, halfway in between sleep and waking, when I heard her voice and felt her cool hands on my forehead.
"See, Matt, you'll be okay. Your mom cares about you so much it's hard for her to even think that she almost lost you like she lost your sister. And there's always someone you can turn to for help if you need it, even if they're strangers that show up at your door in the middle of the afternoon. Someone is always watching over you, and I want you to remember that."
As I woke the next morning, I had thought it was all a dream, but everything had been so vivid. Yet, I wondered, it had been after visiting hours, so how would she have gotten in my room anyway? I pushed those questions aside, not bothering to agonize over them. Then it occurred to me that I had never thanked her. My mom walked in the room them, interrupting my train of thought.
"How are you feeling, honey?" she said, sitting down at my bedside and holding my hand.
"Better," I answered.
"I've been talking to the doctors about the young woman who brought you here. They've been trying to locate her, but she seems to have disappeared into nowhere. How did she even find out about this anyway?"
"She was looking for directions for a Ravios Street. I almost threw her back out of the house because she was being so persistent."
"Ravios? There is no such street."
There was silence until my mom muttered something. "Matt…reverse the first and last letters of Ravios," she said.
"Why? What is it?" I asked, looking at her more intently.
"Savior, Matt. It's Savior."
Later that night, before I fell asleep, I looked out the open window at the clear night sky. I smiled slightly, recalling my savior's words to me the night before. So it was true. Someone really was watching over me.