I found Marie and her son lost and living on the street. I knew I had to help her but what I didn’t know was that she would change my life forever…
I met them one cold morning in the fall. I had just parked my car to go to the office in the city center and saw this girl with her 2-year-old son sitting on the sidewalk.
She looked so confused as if they were just dropped on Earth 5 minutes ago. I normally don’t pay much attention to people when I’m walking, but when I passed them, something called my attention.
I don’t know if it was her beauty, the fact that she seemed lost, or any of those things — there was this pull and I knew I had to help them. Somehow.
“Morning, lady. Are you and your kid okay? Do you need help?”
“Good morning, sir. Ahem… Well, yes. I’m a bit lost… and scared.”
“I can help you. Come with me.”
I drove back to my car, called my boss, and said I wasn’t going to the office that day. I took them to my place and told her, “Don’t be scared, I’m not gonna hurt you.”
I told her to take a shower while I prepared some breakfast. “You must be starving. I made breakfast for you and your son,” I said, then looked at this tiny cute boy and asked him, “What’s your name, buddy?”
“Nice to meet you, Sam. I’m Peter. And you?” I looked at her.
“Ahem…I… I don’t…” She took a seat. “I can’t remember my name. I don’t remember anything at all. It seems to me that I lost my memory. I remember walking up on the street with my son.”
I was determined to help that woman and the kid. So I took her to the doctor and see if he could help her regain her memory again and understand what happened to them.
They ran some exams and the results came. “You have partial amnesia due to intense stress. It happens to a small number of people who suffer some sort of traumatic experience and the brain blocks that memory connected to the event. Your memory will gradually come back,” the doctor explained.
I also turned to law enforcement for help. I took a picture of her and told the officer what happened. They promised to find her family.
When I came back from the police station, I was surprised. She cooked dinner for me! “Hi, Peter! I decided to prepare something for you while you were out. You must be tired…” she told me.
Moreover, during dinner, she finally remembered her name. She exclaimed, “Marie! My name is Marie!”
“Your memory is coming back!” I said in excitement. “I think so,” she said staring at me. “Well, cheers to that!” and we toasted.
They were staying with me and I grew attached to them. We’d spend evenings talking about anything and everything… We had so many things in common that it felt like we already knew each other for such a long time. Marie was a very smart woman and interesting to talk to.
That went on for a month until something I feared happened. Someone knocked on my door. It was a shady and dubious man. “I’m looking for my wife. I heard she’s staying here.”
I went to Marie. “Are you sure you know this man, Marie?” I asked her
Yes. He’s my husband,” she said feeling a bit scared. “I remembered he kicked us out back then…”
“Hey, hurry up!” said the man when he heard me talking to Marie.
“Are you sure you have to go?”
“Yes… Thank you, Peter. Good-bye.”
She hugged me and left. As soon as she left, my house felt empty. With her and Sam here it had come to life. But now, it felt empty and lonely again.
I knew she had a life before I met her and that man was her husband and her son’s father. I knew I shouldn’t be interfering in her life anymore. But the thing is, I missed her. I missed her laugh, her stories, her sense of humor, and her intelligence. I missed Sam too. I can’t remember the last time I liked someone that much…
I realized that I couldn’t go on as if she’d never been in my life. And I was afraid that her husband could hurt her again. So I went to the police station and asked them to help me — they promised they’d locate her family, right? So I went there and told the officer what had happened since the last time I was there.
I told him I was worried about Marie and Sam and asked him to provide me the address of the man who found her. The man agreed and told me to contact him if I needed to.
I left the police station and drove to the address he gave to me. I didn’t know what I would tell her when I saw her, but I knew one thing… I couldn’t live without her.
Marie opened the door as if she was waiting for me. “Oh Peter! I knew you’d come! How did you find me?” she said with a smile and hugged me.
“I couldn’t just not…”
“I’m so glad to see you,” she said.
“Me too. I came to pick you up. Let’s go back home, Marie.”
“But I can’t just leave like this, Peter. I’m afraid that my husband could do something to me or to Sam… That’s why I came back. I couldn’t stay with you. He knows where you live. We need to think of a plan. And… you should leave! He’ll come back home at any time.
“Ok, can you meet me tomorrow at 1 pm, at the restaurant in front of my place?”
“Yeah, see you then.”
Marie and I plotted a plan. We had a week to put things together. I rented an apartment outside town for a few months as a temporary measure, so the man couldn’t locate them. The plan was, they would stay there for a month until I could leave my job and move there afterward.
The day came, Marie left a letter for her husband and I was waiting for her outside. Marie threw her cellphone away and she was even thinking of changing her identity.
“Let’s go, my love. We have a new life waiting for us!”
So, I drove toward the best days of my life.
What can we learn from this story?
- Sometimes life just gives us one shot. If Peter had decided not to fight for Marie, he’d probably lose her. He recognized he only had one chance to take her back.
- Always follow your heart’s will. Peter wasn’t sure if he should interfere in Marie’s life but he knew in his heart it was the right decision.