My life has never been about putting down roots and staying in one place. It’s never been about making safe choices or tip-toeing out to the edge of the cliff to peer over the rim into oblivion. My life has been about jumping and leaping, soaring and flying, and, more often than not, crashing and burning. But therein lies the root of perspective. How high is high? How low is low? What does it feel like to be truly happy? What does it feel like to free-fall from perceived financial security to no income in the blink of an eye–by choice? It’s scary as hell; it takes your breath away; there is a profound exhilaration when the ability to sprout wings comes fast and furious; and it’s addictive.
Twelve years ago, I had a good job with a good salary in a city I loved. One day, I woke up in my comfy cave (yes, I had one then!) and decided that I needed a change. I quit my job, gave up my townhouse, put everything in storage, and hit the road, traveling across Canada and the western U.S. in a pick-up truck while I waited for the next big thing to come along and grab me. Since then, I’ve moved from Maryland to Ohio to Georgia, back to Maryland, and finally to Florida.
My brother asked me one time why I keep making these big leaps in my life and the only answer I could think of was this: It’s more fun to jump off a cliff than to fall off a cliff. It’s all about perception, really. I perceive therefore I am. I am what I perceive.
When push comes to shove, something clicks in my brain and I realize that I can either become the victim (slipping and falling while I go into shock and wondering all the way down what the heck just happened) or I can take control of my life and my decisions. For me, the act of jumping ignites a sense of all possibilities and potentialities rushing to the forefront, vying for attention. My descent begins to look like a good thing as I waver in the wind, adjusting my wings to land in a spot of my choosing be it soft, green grass or rocky terrain, in familiar territory or an alien landscape.
But I think the real answer to why I leap is really this: There is no reason to be unhappy–ever. I still find myself with the blues once in a while, but I know that I can change my feelings as easily as I can change my mind. Small leaps of the mind can be as fruitful as big leaps if you put your energy and intent behind them.
After all this time, having made great leaps and tiny jumps and displayed phoenix-like qualities more than once, I have discovered that I am the master of my destiny and when my spirit says “Jump!” it’s not usually a matter of how high but when.
Just for Fun!
This one is for you, Topher!