If you choose to jump off a cliff
We can talk as you fall
But I can’t promise you, no
When you hit the ground that there will be
Something there to break your fall
Well, I guess you know it all.
It’s as if you were
Waiting around to die
And you found something to mend
The frayed corners of your mind."
- Emily Jane White, The Cliff
When I first realized I was a grown up and I had to become a single mother and I needed a job and I was younger and stronger than I am now, I wondered how I would survive. For years, I had dreams of jumping off a specific cliff on the coast of San Diego. Ten years later I would walk to that very same cliff at lunch from my nearby ocean view executive office. I survived.
I faced a few other hard times over the years, but I have always remembered taking that very first death-defying leap of faith off a cliff of complacency and unhappiness for a chance at happiness. As the years roll on, the cliffs have become less precipitous, but that is a good thing because my bones have become more brittle. I no longer believe I can fly.
I have moved to a house with safer stairs than my old house, but I’m sorry to say that making it upstairs at night with a kitty asleep in my arms is a big enough challenge for me.
I miss California. In a while, I will miss Seattle. I will move to the heartland, to Zone 5 from Zone 9. From sun-drenched deserts and from rain-drenched coastal jungles I will move to the middle of the country: Des Moines, Iowa. I know, right?
It snows there, but it might not be as dark at daytime. It’s cold there, but it might not be as wet as all the time. I could really use something to mend my frayed wits and to distract me from waiting around to die. I need to make a leap of faith to a new home where I might make some new friends. I’m still determined to try.
I’m told it’s flat: no cliffs. So, I have that going for me.