Six years, four months, five days, six minutes and 100 seconds
(Chicago, IL, USA)
He was six. Six years old the day he died. Six years old and four months. And five days. And six minutes. And 100 seconds. The day he died. Six years old, four months, five days, six minutes and 100 seconds the day I watched him die. Everyone wants to think they could be a hero. Something happens and you think, I will be the guy whose adrenaline kicks in. I will be the guy who saves the day. My name will be in the papers. I will be on TV. People will thank you. I saved a life. What would they do without me?
Not everyone is that hero. I am not a hero. I am a normal 28-year old girl caught up in her own issues and her own life to react. So when he, that six years four months five days six minutes and 100 seconds-year old boy walked into the intersection of Clark and Diversey...I did nothing but stare. I did not yell out. I did not run out. I stared. I thought, "How awful." I thought, "Where is his mother or father?" I thought, "Someone needs to stop those cars." "Someone needs to do something." I thought. I did nothing but think. I thought, "if it was me, who would come to the hospital? Would Alex come even though we had broken up? Would he think it was just a dumb ruse to get his attention? Or would he see me and think about how much he missed me and wanted to be there when these things happened? Would my friends even think to tell him or would I have to tell him when I woke up and then maybe at that point it would be too late because he would know that I was clearly fine and not in need of his care. But I am in need of his care. Too bad he has a new girlfriend. Which he is happy with. He deserves to be happy. I want him to be happy. I want him to be happy... with me. I want to know that he thinks about me. That he misses me. That he knows that his new girlfriend is nearly as pretty as me and probably not as fun as me. Does she go see silly movies with him like I did? Probably. Does she remember everything he tells her? Probably. Has she see him cry before? I have. Is that a good thing? Should you see someone cry when you haven't been with them that long? Does he like her better than he liked me? They've been dating longer. But maybe they spend less time together. Or maybe she likes him better because she isn't an actor. Maybe he likes her better because she is a better person."
I thought. And I stared. I stared as people rushed into the street to help this little boy. I stared as the ambulance pulled up. I stared as people screamed and helped and cried. I stared. And he died.