“Why in God’s name is he calling me he knows I’m working?!” “What?!” You probably could have heard me stump my foot on the floor. Irritation, before I was medicated, was achieved in 0-10 seconds. “She’s acting all crazy again, talking about suicide and all. I don’t know what to do.” My then boyfriend’s new roommate was drinking way too much that night, as most of us did. So when he related this information to me, I thought, “let her sleep it off.” “Just come here, (I worked as a waitress) and get some food. She’ll be fine in the morning. She’s a girl, we all act so stupidly when we are emotional and drunk.” Or so I thought that’s what this was.
“Okay, your right I’ll let her boyfriend get her home, I’ll be there soon.”
The extra space is important. Because from the moment we hung up, to the moment my phone rang again, there was nothing. Pure silence.
It was 2:30am, bar close, in Wisconsin when my phone finally went off again. I was raging at this point, no call, no show WTH?! But before I could even get that far as to say WTH I heard the sirens. Dead silence, but sirens. “I think she’s dead, I think she’s dead!” I could hear he was out of breath, my need to protect kicked in so fast I refused to listen. “No, I’m sure it’s fine. Are those cops coming? They will get her to the hospital and she’ll get the help she needs.” “JEAN, SHE HAD A GUN!” Time stopped. Everything I knew about attempts on one’s life, guns never left much hope. “Okay well, we don’t know just yet, just do what the cops say stay on the phone with me.
At that moment I heard the officers pull up and ask for his hands up. There were questions about who he was speaking with. I just stayed on the line, I figured the cop would pick up the phone and talk to me. My ex-explained it was me, and as they were cuffing him and putting him in the squad car. (Procedure gun was involved) They did let him briefly tell me he was going downtown and to pick him up there….eventually.
At that point, I didn’t know what to do. I mean I couldn’t do much. My best friend was gone. Or maybe not. It was a short best friendship, one where you meet and you just know your souls can read each other. No, we didn’t grow up having sleepovers or sharing boy problems. But we connected in a way only those with mood disorders can. (Sorry Norms your out here ;0))
I started making my calls, I was the only one on, save the cook, so I needed another waitress. Thank God someone was able to answer the phone. Next, I went straight to the ECPD. No entrance of course, so I headed out to her boyfriend’s house I figured there would be people there. Along the way, my logical brain continued to kick in and I called my roommate, a mortician. 🙂 Living with him I knew one funeral director or another would be on call to pick up bodies overnight. Matt, (the one person I can name in this), was so helpful. I had no idea as to what to expect. What was going on, I mean I was at a loss to help.
“Jeanie, come home. Get somewhere and sit down. It’s going to be awhile, if a gun is involved they will be interrogating him for hours. They are probably still listening to calls maybe even this one. You need to let them do their job. I’ll find out what I can in the morning and let you and her family know from there.” I pulled over and balled. How did this happen? If I had just had them bring her to me for some food. Why, Why, Why?!
I pulled it together, continued to the boyfriend’s house. We sat a group of us, in silence. I took a shot of something. I didn’t really care what. My ex finally called he was released. I got him to my house and did what I could to convince him to rest. I never did.
The apartment called the next day, to let us know we could go in. I was impressed, that was fast. He wasn’t able to get in there just yet. So I went in, her blood-soaked bed was still there (great cleaning company) I walked into her room. They barely did anything, I knew this as going to be my job, to clean up the remains (pieces really) of a 23-year-old.
I grabbed him what he needed and the cats. I couldn’t even begin to figure out how any of this had happened.
When I finally went back to work, the ECPD had a habit of coming into the restaurant about 4 AM. When I saw them I went and grabbed their coffee and just said thank you. I knew they had a horrible situation to handle but did it well
(Crying again here) 3 of them stood up as soon as they knew what I was talking about. They gave me huge hugs and told me they would be watching me because most suicides happen after someone close has committed suicide. They also explained that because she was of the right age, on anti-depressants and drinking. They call it a suicidal cocktail.
It’s amazing what knowledge will do for a person, thank Eau Claire, Wisconsin Police Dept. Another group that showed knowledge over ignorance can change the perspective of the future. (you can quote that one lol)