Tom Schreck, author of the Duffy Dombrowski Mysteries
Imagine life has gotten pretty bad.
Hopelessness, helplessness and extreme loneliness are constants.
Ending it becomes an option. I volunteer on a suicide hotline and I talk to people who feel like this. Some people around you are in an intense amount of pain.
I just read a story about a woman in Virginia. She was missing for two days in the woods. The news reports didn’t give her name or a lot of detail but a clear picture formed in my mind after working a shift on the phones last night.
Picture feeling so bad that you parked the car and went into the woods to put an end to things. Maybe you’ve got pills with you, maybe a firearm or maybe a razor. You could end it and no one would find you for a long time or maybe ever.
Then something happens. A little spark says “don’t”. A mom or dad from the past plants a seed or maybe just that kind smile you get at the coffee shop in the morning resonates that life might–just might–be worth another try.
Except now you’re in the woods, disoriented and hypothermia has set in. Concentration has been tough for awhile anyway but now it’s at a crisis level. You didn’t tell anyone where you were going.
Two days go by and you’re lost, oh so lost, in so many different ways.
Then, from out of nowhere you hear something. A rustle, the tread of sets of feet and it’s getting closer and louder.
From out of the brush comes a 140 lb creature tethered to a police officer. A bloodhound who somehow was blessed with the ability to find the lost.
“Schnoz” you find out is his name and he runs to you and playfully jumps up to say “I got you. You aren’t lost now.”
You’re rescued and, for now, physically safe. It wasn’t time and maybe life won’t be a picnic from here on out.
But it wasn’t time to die.
It was time to not be lost.
It was time to be found.
That’s what Schnoz did.