A Beautiful Walk I Didn’t Take


Dealing With DepressionLast weekend on the way to the home improvement store my husband decided to stop for a family walk.  The picture to the left shows my happy little family. The car is about twenty feet behind me and the edge of this bridge was as far as I got before turning back and telling them I’d wait in the car.

I’m still depressed, though I seem to be slowly crawling back out of the hole I found myself in last week. I also threw my back out. The shooting pain down the front of my leg along with the dark hole of emotions I’ve been standing in made the walk too difficult a prospect. So, I sat in the car while my family did a quick exploration of the old bridge and the waterway under it.

As I sat there swiping the news on my phone, several cars pulled up next to us to walk the trail as well. I watched a man with binoculars happily take off down the trail with his eyes already searching the trees for what I could only assume were birds. I silently hoped he got far enough away that my exuberant children didn’t scare off his hobby.

Another car pulled up right after him and parked just out of my eyesight. I would have had to turn my head around to look at them and since the news was providing such positive vibes for helping me out of my depression, I didn’t look. I did turn when I heard a blood curdling scream followed by loud crying. There was a young girl, probably between 10 and 12, on the ground behind her family’s car with her mother leaning over her. She looked as if she may have fallen in the shallow ditch next to the road. As a mother I quickly understood that the crying was not of a child in pain but of a child wanting attention. The father and older sister must have understood that as well since they walked on towards the trail as if nothing were happening behind them. They stood for a bit looking out towards the trees as the mother loudly urged the younger girl to get up and shake it off. She finally did and the family headed towards the trail which started with the bridge in the picture above. The mother, father, and oldest child, walked out onto the bridge without noticing that the younger child wasn’t behind them. She had started onto the bridge, then walked backwards off of it, and was waiting until someone in her family noticed she wasn’t with them. I know she was waiting because she waited very patiently with no untoward reactions until her mother turned towards her, then the little girl tensed her body and began crying again that she was too scared to go onto the bridge.

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As this was happening my family were making their way out from under their bridge. My children barely gave the girl a second glance as they ran to tell me about walking along the water and my husband walked toward me with a “I am so glad it’s not our kid” look.

You’d think this post would end with some feeling of wishing or knowing I should have taken the walk with my family, that I shouldn’t have missed the beautiful moment instead of sitting in my car reading Yahoo. But I don’t feel that way. The moral of the story to me? I’m depressed, and some things may seem dark, but on this day my kid wasn’t fake crying while we tried to take a family walk. Not this time anyway.