Write a new post in response to today’s one-word prompt.
“Leap. It’s a funny word, really. The more you say it, the funnier it sounds,” thought Jessica as she stood on the ledge of the apartment house where she lived.
It was twenty stories high. She’d taken the elevator to the top floor, then climbed the stairs to the roof. People used the roof. There were little potted gardens, lawn chairs, and debris of all sorts.
In a daze, Jessica had walked through the clutter until she stood at the low wall surrounding the roof. Stopped. Gazed out, and then ever so slowly downward at the traffic far below. Little toy cars and trucks, and miniature people scurrying like ants on their endless quest for food.
The noise wasn’t so bad up on the roof. The cacophony of city sounds seemed distant, muffled. Of course, right now everything was distant and muffled. It was as if she had cotton stuffed in her ears. Mostly what she hears was the gluey thumping of her own heart, and the clashing of thoughts in her own head.
“Go ahead. Your life is over. Nothing left to live for, no reason to go on. You’re a useless piece of dreck, anyway. Useless. A failure. A loser. Ask anyone.”
“NO! I’m not just garbage! I’m young, I’m healthy, I can come back from this. There are at least two people who love me, who would grieve terribly. I can go back to them, go home and start over. . . .”
“Don’t be silly. They’re ashamed of you. Appalled at your lack of common sense, at what you’ve thrown away. You’d only humiliate them, bring more shame down on their heads. Go on. Leap. Get it done. It’s the one thing you could do right.”
“That’s a lie! My parents love me, no matter what. I KNOW they do! They’d want me to come home, not be a coward and end my life this way. . . .”
“Pssshhh! You’re a fool. If you choose to live, you’ll just go on being stupid. Making STUPID decisions, trusting the wrong people, making STUPID mistakes and leaving yourself in the dust. Do it! Leap. LEAP!”
“You’re a coward. Jump. Once you do, there will be no more choices to make. Peace.”
“No, you’re wrong. I’m not a coward. I faced my behavior and did what I had to do.”
“Then what are you afraid of? LEAP!”
“What if you’re wrong? What if my behavior wasn’t as bad as you’ve made me think? What if I just go back to my apartment, get some sleep, start a new job hunt?”
“Who would hire you, after what you did? Please. Don’t be a fool. Jump. It’s the best solution.”
“No, I don’t think it is. I think you’re a liar. I don’t believe you. I don’t even know how I got up here, but I’m NOT going to jump!”
Jessica turned, retraced her steps all the way back down to the third floor. As she pushed open the door to her apartment, her phone began to ring.
And there was hope.