The Edge

By Molly Nieuwenhoff. Molly is 14. Please leave your thoughts below. 

I tread carefully over the gravel and debris that covers the cliff top. As I reach the edge I can feel my backpack becoming heavier and heavier. Like my thoughts it’s weighing me down. I let it go. The fluorescent thing falls to the ground and my toes curl in my heavy boots. I clench my fists as I breathe in a huge breath. I release the breath. But I’m not just releasing the bad unwanted carbon dioxide. I’m releasing everything bad. The sadness I feel, the emptiness I feel in the pit of my stomach. It’s all gone in that one silent moment. But then I inevitably have to inhale again and even though it’s just one simple action, it hurts because everything comes rushing back. Distracting myself from the unnecessary, unwanted buzzing of my head, I look at my surroundings. They’re beautiful. Vibrant, green fir trees sway in the wind and contrast brilliantly against the grey skies. There is a lake situated at the foot of the cliff that shimmers in the dull sunlight.  

A sudden but powerful gust of wind knocks me and I fall onto my back. Gasping I whisper “ow” to myself. I prop myself up on my bony elbows and smile. I don’t know why I’m smiling. I’ve fallen and hurt myself but I’m smiling. I giggle a little bit, and grin some more. I realise that anyone walking past would think I’m mad. I’m lying in a muddy puddle on a cliff laughing to myself but I just don’t care. 

“Right”, I whisper to myself. “I can do this, I can get up”.  

Cautiously I place my palms flat on the ground and feel the pebbles stick into my hands. I then pull my knees to my chest. It stings but the pain is bearable. I know I can do it. All at once I’m up on my feet, the grin still remains on my face.  

“I did it, hah I did it” I say under my breath. 

But then I’m shouting “I DID IT!”, at the top of my lungs because I did do it. I fell, I hurt, I didn’t think I could recover, but I did. I picked myself up all on my own and now, I’m on top of the world. I’m on top of the world because I DID IT. You can do it too, you can grasp yourself from the edge because you can do it. I believe in you even when you don’t believe in yourself.  

8 comments on “The Edge

  1. Joe on

    WOWWWW there’s nothing else I can say!!! This story is amazing. You really captured the importance of mental health. Some people will read ur story as just words on a page, but the way you captured mental illness is beautiful. You’re gonna help so many people with this Molly, because you were the one person who believed in them!

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