Jessie has been thinking about her suicide on and off for about ten years, but she has been planning it since Christmas. On the night that the play takes place, she begins by looking for towels and a big rubber sheet or something similar like a garbage bag. She also looks for her father’s gun in the attic and mentions that she has already had Dawson from the feed store send her bullets.
Jesse also mentions several things that she has put in order already, which shows the audience how she has been planning for this in advance. For example, her mother points out that they are out of snowballs, and Jessie tells her that she ordered a whole case that is coming tomorrow. She also has a list of things she needs to get done that night and to explain to her mother before she goes. For example, she explains what is in the drawer for everything “that there’s no better place for” and mentions where things like lightbulbs and matches are. She also helps her mother make funeral plans.
Much like Jessie’s decision to end her life, her meticulous planning is a way for her to feel she is in control. She has always felt like she lacked control over her life, but by planning exactly how and when to act on her thoughts, she feels as if she finally has a say in what happens to her for once.