“You went back to what you knew
So far removed from all that we went through
And I tread a troubled track
My odds are stacked
I’ll go back to black”
It was Friday 24 March 2017. A horrible, grey, bleak day. The girl didn’t sleep well, neither did the boy. The boy had hurt the girl, badly, in fact he had broken her heart and she was angry and devastated because she had thought that the boy was an angel, who was incapable of doing anything wrong. The girl felt awful. She had no idea what to do. The boy was the person she always ran to but at that moment in time she wanted to run away from him.
So she ran, all the way to her work (10 miles) one of the worst and slowest runs of her life and even the run didn’t make her feel better. She stopped after 2 miles and almost turned back and went home. She could have worked from home that day. She could have stayed with the boy but she thought it was better that they have some space from each other. After all, they were going to spend the whole weekend together.
In any event, the girl spent her whole morning at work talking to the boy on the phone. The boy cried. The boy never ever cried. But the girl thought that the boy was crying because he was really sorry.
The boy told the girl that “if he thought that he had lost her he would kill himself”. The boy had never said anything like that before and the girl told her best friend and asked her if she should be worried and her best friend reassured her that the boy didn’t mean it. That he couldn’t mean that because nobody ever meant those words.
But the girl felt terrible. Like something was dreadfully wrong. She didn’t know what to do. So she decided that she would do what she what she always did when she was stressed: go to the gym. She was still speaking to the boy on the phone when she went into the underground station to get to her gym and the phone cut out. The girl was late for her spinning class so she ran all the way there from the station and thought she would just call the boy back when she got out of the gym.
All she did during her spinning class was think about the boy and as soon as she got out of the gym she called the boy. But he didn’t pick up. She called the boy over and over again and emailed him telling him to pick up his phone. But she heard nothing from the boy.
She had a meeting scheduled with a client that afternoon and the girl went to the meeting. She put on a brave face and tried to act normally, hoping that once she returned to her office she would find a missed call from the boy on her phone. But there was nothing.
At that moment the girl started to worry because it had dawned on her that the boy was a doctor and if wanted to hurt himself he would know exactly what to do.
The girl was scared and all she wanted to do was to get home and see the boy. She was so scared and worried that she realised that she would forgive him anything. She just needed to get home and be with him. Nothing else mattered.
She calculated that, at almost rush hour and having to travel through Central London, it would be quickest if she caught the tube home and ran home from the tube station. The girl kept trying to reach the boy and she prayed to God that the boy would be safe. She prayed the most desperate prayers of her entire life that the boy was OK because the boy was EVERYTHING to the girl. The girl got out of the tube station and despite the fact that she was heavily laden with work folders, like a bag lady as always, she ran as fast as she could to their flat.
The first thing she noticed when she got to the flat was that the curtains were drawn. She tried to be positive because her gut was telling her something was very wrong. But she rung the bell to her flat because she wanted the boy to come down and open the door for her. Because if he opened the door for her, everything would be OK. But he didn’t open the door.
She unlocked the door and for a moment felt positive because the door wasn’t double locked which always meant that the boy was at home. She looked up the stairs and she saw the boy and for one moment she thought the boy was waiting for her at the top of the stairs like he had so many times in the past.
But when she looked properly at the boy she realised that his eyes were open but he wasn’t looking at her, he wasn’t looking at anything and the beautiful, beautiful boy that she loved didn’t look right, he looked like something out of a horror movie.
He had hung himself in the flat that the boy and the girl shared, the flat that they had loved, the flat that was full of happy memories, the first flat of the blissfully happy newlyweds. It was now the flat where the boy died.
And in that instant the girl felt a pain that can never be described. A pain that was blinding and raw and unthinkable. A pain that in one instant obliterated every ounce of positivity that the girl possessed. A pain that broke her soul and left behind a shell. Because the boy was dead and the girl could do nothing about it. The girl couldn’t stop it, she couldn’t reverse it, the girl couldn’t save him. There are no words that will ever be able to describe how helpless the girl felt when she realised that she was too late and there was nothing she could do. The boy was gone. The boy who was both her only and her everything was not there anymore and he was never ever coming back. The girl froze and then she screamed and she kept screaming. She would have screamed for the rest of her life if she could have. She knew the boy was dead and at that moment every single bit of colour and light and happiness drained out of the girl’s world and it went black.
It dawned on her that the boy had done this before, had tried to kill himself once, before he met her. When he was a teenager and stressed about his exams. She realised, after he died, that they had met 4 months after his suicide attempt.
But suicide and darkness was no part of who THEY were and if they were a part of him, it was a part of him that he hid from her completely and that he also hid from everybody that knew him.
A neighbour called an ambulance and the neighbour and the girl tried to do CPR on the boy. The girl had no clue what she was doing but she knew it didn’t any make any difference because she had felt the boy’s hand and it was stiff. The girl knew that people who are alive don’t have rigor mortis and she had been in a love with a Dr for long enough to realise that this was what it was.
The girl was in shock and everything was a blur and suddenly it seemed like their London flat was full of people. Strangers. Ambulance staff, paramedics, the police – all of these strangers in her flat with their dirty shoes on the white carpet.
Her closest friends and family came to be with her. But for the girl nothing mattered at all. The only thing that mattered was that the boy was gone. The girl’s existence didn’t make sense anymore. Because in the girl’s mind, the two of them were supposed to exist together forever. Kira and Karl. Without the boy, the girl’s life had no meaning. In the girl’s head, they were like Romeo and Juliet and if Karl was dead, Kira should be dead too. It was logical.
The girl begged the police to leave her in the kitchen alone with her husband and she climbed on top of him and hugged him in the way she had done a million times before. The last time she would ever come close to feeling what it felt like to be in his arms. But he was cold and the longer she laid on top of him the more that cold chilled her and transferred to every cell of her body.
She thought about getting a kitchen knife and cutting her wrists and dying too – because it made sense to her. For her, the idea of a life without him was a life that was worthless. A life that would always be inferior because he was gone. The love of her life was dead. All of her dreams for the future had died too. The children that they had dreamed of for 11.5 years and even named, would never happen. For her, all that existed in that moment, was an inexorable logic. That if he had died, she should die too. The girl’s life was going to be totally different now and she didn’t want any of it. All she wanted was her old life back, all she wanted was the boy back and she was never ever going to get what she wanted more than anything in the whole world.
She wouldn’t let them take the boy away. She refused to let him go, she had to be prised off of him and then they wouldn’t let her see as they took him away. She wanted to stay in their flat that night but her parents refused to allow that and took her home with them. If they hadn’t done that, she would not have survived because she was like a zombie in a trance and all she wanted to do was die so that she would be with him again.
That was the first day in the girl’s life that her world turned to black.
What the girl didn’t know at the time was that her world would turn black many more times, sometimes with no warning and like clockwork every single birthday, Christmas, or anniversary. But she also didn’t know, that one day, three years later, she would become strong enough to stop letting the darkness steal her life away too.