Not far from where we used to live is a river, and on the river is a nice deep pool of water alongside a cliff. One day I decided to climb the cliff and jump into this pool. I had never done it before and I had never seen anyone else jump from here either. However legend has it that this particular pool is very deep and many people have jump from the cliff. So I headed down to the river, filled with nervous excitement. I stood at the bottom of the cliff and looked up trying to decide where I would jump from, the water was dark and you could not see the bottom. I decided to start climbing and look for a place to jump from once I was up there. As I started climbing I noticed that I was on a faint path, and you could see, if you looked really closely that other had climbed this same route. I stopped and looked down, I was terrified, I have a fear of heights and now here I am climbing up a cliff about to jump off. I was nervous I stood on the edge looking down into the pool and something inside me said don’t jump from here, go higher. I stepped back and could not believe I was climbing up higher once again. I climbed up a section and suddenly realized that I would not be able to climb back down safely. I had no rope, no one to help or guide me from below, it was just me and the cliff. I was terrified and pictured myself stranded on the cliff hoping someone may spot me. I look around and just above me was a old dead tree not much thicker than my arm. I decided to climb to the tree. Once I got to the tree I noticed how the base of this dead tree was “polished”. I looked down into the water and saw that I was standing at the spot where people have jumped from before. It was far higher than I imagined, and you had to jump out to clear a little ledge before hitting the pool. I could feel the adrenalin pumping, it seemed as if the whole world had come to a standstill, not even the birds made a sound. I stood there and I saw the way off the cliff, it required a leap of faith. I could not step off the edge I had to jump out. The water below was black, I imagined what may be under the surface of the water, was it deep enough, what if a branch has washed down I land on it when I jump. There is no one here, nobody even knows I am here. I turned and look at the cliff I had just climbed. I could try climb back down I thought, I would get scratched, bruised, I may even fall but I will survive if I climb back down and my body will heal. All of a sudden that seemed like the best way out, just climb back down. I thought about it and it was the safest way, it made sense and I liked the idea of been able to walk out the valley back to my car far more than the fears I had conjured up looking down into the water far below. Walk down and come back when you have someone here with you said my mind. I let go of the branch and turned to start climbing down when the reality of what I was about to do hit me. I was facing my fear and letting it control me. My body would get down but my spirit would be crushed, fear would come back and haunt me. I looked back down into the water stood on the edge and I jumped. I jumped as far as I could, My heart stopped as I saw the ledge passing by and I felt my body drop. No turning back. What will be will be. I hit the water and went under, I forgot to take a breath and started panicking. I scratched to get to the surface, the water was freezing my lungs were burning and I was terrified. I surfaced and filled my lungs. I came up with a clear vision, it was like the scales were taken off my eyes and I looked out at a new world. I was alive, I screamed, and the echo screamed back. I swam to the middle of the pool floated on my back staring at the sky and screamed once again. A victory cry, I faced my fear, stood on the cliff and took a leap of faith and I lived. Walking back to my car I realized that I did not even have a scratch, jumping was the easiest way down, I could have climbed down but I would have left a part of me on that cliff. I was whole, I was alive, I could take on anything, life was good.
Things are not alway… on AWAKEN Tracy Golombick on Growing Dylan Murray on The risk of writing Joe on The risk of writing Marlene on Dreams do come true