To slide or not to slide

When thoughts get dark, Ed comes back again.

I saw him in my dreams yet again last night. We were standing at the top of a hill where a family friend just bought a large house. It was one of those sunny, cloudless blue-skies days. Oddly, right at the center of the front lawn of the house was a long, skinny pole that went all the way down to the bottom of the hill. It was steep the way the steepest streets in San Francisco are, like the ones you can’t even walk up properly that require stairs to be built into the cement.

Ed effortlessly slid all the way down the pole to the bottom of the hill, then ran back up to meet me. I could see our parents standing at the bottom of the hill, and I could vaguely hear them arguing over whether doing this was a good idea. “You can do it! Just slide down. You don’t need to think about it so much!” he encouraged me. I keep staring down the pole at the base of the hill, and all I feel is terror at the idea of sliding down and potentially falling off the pole. “I can’t do it,” I whispered to him, yet he continues to encourage me on and on and tell me that I can do it. The last thing I remember is that at the end, I still wouldn’t slide down the pole.

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