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On the Edge
I don’t want to fight. I’m not sure I have the energy left. Is it even worth it? I don’t want to know my best isn’t enough. I’m afraid to try. Knowing I fail when I don’t try, that’s one thing. But failing even when your best foot is put forth? That’s unbearable. And yet, I know that’s what will happen.
What a fine mess I’ve made. I want to undo it all. If only things were that simple! But no. Eyeing the pocket knife resting in the door of my car, I see a much simpler solution.
Driving away from my house, tears stream down my face as I know there will be no better time than this. I’ve wanted this for so long, and finally I have a reason. This is the end. My parents won’t know where I am. All they know is I’m going for a “run”. There’ll be no one to stop me. No one to save me. I just want out; that’s all I want. My parents won’t have to be the ones to find the body and I’ve messed up big enough no one will miss me anyway. I’ll drive past the old cement plant, past the hunting grounds and into the wasteland. People drive by there from time to time, eventually my car will get called in. And then they’ll find me, but too late to stop me. I’ll already be gone, off into greener pastures and the holy sky.
Oh, it’ll be great. It’ll be on the news, and everyone will feel so bad. I’ll be famous. “Missing girl: Last seen…” They’ll search for me for days. And when they finally find my car, it’ll be breaking news. When the search crews comb the hills and find my body, it’ll be the climactic end I’ve always wanted. Or, perhaps they’ll never find it. Maybe I’ll get eaten and I’ll always be a mystery to the town, “The girl that was never found”. Oh boy, wouldn’t everyone feel guilty after that!
Then I think of everyone that would get hurt. My little sister, my friends, that nice guy down at the grocery store. They’d hang posters, they’d never give up. They’d always ask why. Would it really be fair to take their lives along with mine?
I’ve hit a stop light and the man in the left turn lane is staring at me. I put on sunglasses to hide the tears rolling off my eyelids. Don’t make eye contact. The light turns green, and I go forward.
There would be some people hurt. Not everyone’s mad. Some people know it was a mistake. But the consequences! If I stay, everything’s going to be different. If I’m gone, nothing can change. I’ll end on this apex of my life; right before it all comes crashing down.
Do I really know this is the apex of my life? Perhaps this is only a small peak. What of the bright skies ahead; college and family and unforeseen treasures? Sure, this is certainly a road bump. But really, who’s to say it won’t work out?
It won’t. I know that. It can’t; I’ve messed up too big. One tiny little action, and suddenly my world’s crashing down on me. Ryan’s furious…
Oh, god. Ryan. Can I really do this to him? It would mess up all his relationships for the rest of his life. Anytime he’d get in a fight, he’d think of me. He’d think of what happened, and he wouldn’t fight with anyone. Heck, he might not even get close to anyone. At least then he won’t forget me. But I can’t do that to him. If he can’t forgive me what I’ve done, I want him to be able to move on and be happy. I love him enough to want him that.
I know I can’t be happy without him. I don’t see the point of life without him. Getting close to the edge of town, I eye the knife once again. He’s said all he wants is for me to be happy. Would he understand if I did this- if I took my own life so I won’t have to feel that pain again? So I won’t have to lose again?
I reach the train tracks, and that’s when I hear the crossing bells. No arm comes down, nothing stops me from pulling forward. I don’t see the train yet, but I know its coming. As the train roars into the edge of my vision, the lights get brighter and brighter until I’m nearly blinded. This is it. This is my end. Goodbye problems, goodbye pain. Goodbye Ryan and goodbye hope. The train gets closer still. Watching my life pass before my eyes, I suddenly freak. I slam on the gas and pull off the tracks. As my car lurches out of dangers way and into tall grass the same color as the sun, I find myself out of breath. My heart races to keep pace with my mind as the train blasts by behind me.
I want to live. What right do I have to end it already? It’s just gotten started. I have nothing to show for my pathetic little sliver of a life so far, and no reason to end it. I can’t just stop now, not when I haven’t even gotten to the good part. For myself, for my little sister, for Ryan, I have to live. I don’t deserve the easy way out.
My heart beats harder and harder, reminding me I am alive. Gathering my wits, I pull back onto the road. I take one last look at the knife, and throw it out the window. It’s time for me to live.