Monday, April 17, 2006

Not Good--not good at all

Okay, this post is not good. If you came here to read about chocolate and happiness, click that little X in the corner and be gone. Yes, the purpose of MISS ANNIE'S CANDY was to talk about the sweet things. Things I make and sell and give away. My dream to turn my profit-making hobby into a real business...The sweet things like starting a new life for me and the children after so many years of heartache...the sweetness of friendships and community and the bounty of life.

But today something so horrible happened that I will write about it and see if that makes it better. Better? Can't imagine better right now, but here goes.

We live in an apartment complex that consists of two 46 story towers with a beautiful plaza on the second floor. This beautiful plaza is one of the reasons that living here is so wonderful. It has a lovely playground, basketball court, and for people who pay, a tennis club and courts, a lovely health club and pool and sundeck (also for people who pay). It has a wall-climbing place, beautiful trees and flowers, a security staff that's always available and a youth staff that keeps all of our kids busy and content...oh yeah, and also dolphin statues that spout water to play around in the summer.

Today, at 4:30pm a man on the 28th floor took a running leap off his balcony and hit the basketball thing...Oh I don't even know how to explain it...He hit the poles on the backside of the hoop. My son was playing basketball but on the other end of the court. When he and his friend heard the noise they wisely chose to leave and go to his friend's apartment in the other building. He called on his cell and said something really awful happened on the playground...he didn't know exactly what, he was frantic saying he knew someone was hurt but didn't know how/what....I pick up the answering machine phone and ran to my window..I live on the 6th floor overlooking the playground... and I saw a sight that will haunt me for a long time. I knew immediately that someone had jumped. I won't begin to tell you what I saw...It was awful. I'll wrap this up to say that the police, investigators, medical examiners, etc. finally took the body at 8PM, the maintenance crew did their job and except for the long angled pole that the guy hit, which shows the result of this terrible day everything looks back to normal.

I just said good-night to my son. He is so disturbed, and rightfully so. I put on an old cassette tape that was made for him when he was a baby, called the "I Love You" tape. A tape that was played everytime he went to sleep when he was a baby...I use the tape now when I put the babies I care for to sleep...

I don't want to say anything bad about this poor tortured soul who chose to take his life today in our backyard, but OH DEAR GOD, WHY DID HE CHOOSE TO DO IT WHEN THERE WAS A PLAYGROUND FULL OF MOTHERS AND CHILDREN AND BABIES AND TEEN-AGERS ENJOYING THEIR SPRING BREAK FROM SCHOOL? Thank-you God that he didn't fall on someone. Help us to get through this night, and tomorrow and all the difficult days ahead. And may he rest in peace. Amen.


Blogger Joy Des Jardins said...

Annie, I came back to visit...only to read about this terrifying experience. One that won't soon be forgotten. I hope your son is okay and won't keep any horrible images in his mind...and you too. I'm sure you and your neighbors will come together for any support and comfort needed to get over this. Good luck to you all.

6:28 PM  
Blogger Sherri said...

Annie I am sorry you had such a hard day. I can imagine how you felt. I dont really know what to say considering my own son tried to kill himself. I guess some souls are more troubled then others.. He was looking for a way to end his pain and I guess he did.. I hope your son is gonna be okay.. Take care my friend. My thoughts are with you.

7:01 PM  
Blogger Gary said...

Miss Annie -- Barbara told me the horrible story about the jumper. So sorry you and your kids had to experience that. It's so sad and terrifying. I'm sure you'll all have nightmares about the man for years.

Sorry I haven't been commenting on your blog. I've been so busy teaching and dividing my time between NYC and my place upstate that I've hardly had time to post on my own blog. But my summer starts in exactly two months.

We had dinner with an Oregonian couple last night at Ponsgri. I met Loretta and Peter in Bend when I read there, and we really hit it off. They're here vacationing for the week, and so we got together. We had a nice dinner with them. Makes me miss Oregon, though. I also called out to the cabin a few days ago and spoke with Emma Brown, this year's resident writer. She's doing well despite all the spring rain.

Be well,


8:30 AM  
Blogger Suzann said...

Annie - OMG, how terrible. People in that much pain are incapable of thinking about others - I too am glad that no one else was physically hurt. What a traumatic experience for your son, for you and all your neighbors. I hope you are all feeling a bit better - life is certainly mysterious. Take care of you and yours.

9:56 AM  

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