STUART McGINLEY: Health and happiness are most important

I experienced one of those weird moments this week which made me stop and think about how lucky I am.

Sometimes we all lie in bed at night worrying about things, which at the time might be important but rarely are worthy of losing sleep over.

I was on a train back from Brighton last weekend which suddenly stopped at Hove station and I started to get irritated because I was going to get home late.

We were then told that all lines between Worthing and Lancing had been closed because of a ‘distressed person’, they didn’t say any more but your imagination takes over.

You can picture someone perhaps on a bridge over the railway line or on the track, maybe threatening to kill themselves.

In the end the train started moving about 40 minutes later and we got home safely, but I was wondering how this person was and hoping no harm had come to them, while also feeling a bit silly about moaning about being late.

We always hear about people taking their own lives on the railways, but soon other thoughts take over and we move on with

our lives, but this isn’t so easy for the loved ones of those who died and of course the poor train drivers who have to witness this tragedy all too often.

A few days later while out walking my dog in Southbourne, I saw two people placing flowers at a pedestrian crossing by the side of the railway and consoling each other. My heart went out to them as clearly they had lost someone; perhaps a son or daughter who had taken their own life.

I have been one of those to say in the past that taking one’s own life in such a public way without any consideration for others is a hugely selfish act, but of course the mere fact that a person feels the need to even consider doing such a tragic thing means they are in desperate need and any logical thoughts have long since gone.

For this reason, next time I get delayed on a train it will certainly make me appreciate my health, wellbeing and happiness, even if it means getting home a few minutes late.

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