I will never need to go skydiving. I have felt myself plummet. The wind across my face, plastering my hair back, rushing in my ears blotting out all other sound. I have looked into the great blue, felt the unfiltered sunlight, and seen the world far below. I have leaned forward and not fallen. I have done all this while sitting on a rock at 12,000 feet on an tundra-covered peak, where the moss blooms in tiny pink flowers.
I followed the moon home one night. I drove on darkened roads while the low silver disk hung before me, as if it were nothing more than a bobble on my rearview mirror. It would swing back and forth with the twisting road, dip up and down with the hills rolling under the car, and then return to center, lighting the way home. And as I stood on the stoop and glanced to the west, only then did the bright, smiling moon tumble it’s bed beyond the ridge and so I did the same.
I find here and there granite seats where I can listen to the whispering trees and flowing water. I can feel sun warmed rock and mountain cooled breezes. I watch birds circle and ants wander and think my thoughts without deadline. I notice the neurosis, the ego, the anxiety is still there, but it is small now and distant, like the ant against the mountain or the bird against the sky. It is so much less important that it seemed only moments ago and will seem again sometime in the future.
I have flown on four swift legs not my own through the rushing course of trees and over the whipping grasses, across swift, clear streams, and around tumbled boulders. We watched a hawk circle overhead and listened to the ground squirrels shriek in warning. I have felt my breath match that of my horse, our ribs rising in unison. We smiled together, my smile all teeth and happy cheeks and crinkles around the corner of my eyes, his smile a high head, perked ears, and fast thumping hooves.
I wander the shelves of the library and sit with my prizes along the tumbling laughter of the creek, while young men in shorts and water shoes float lazily by and curious dogs with bright eyes prance beneath the shady trees. I share wine and cheese with friends, and laughter and Shakespeare too. We race to beat the sprinklers swinging across the walk and almost make it, shrieking in almost triumph.
I have seen the tall, dashing man on the dark steed crossing the green meadow, pennant flying in the wind, like in a story book. I have seen the white stockings on dark legs flashing through the tall grass, and the gleam of polished metal against black leather saddles and bridles. I have admired the sharply turned out uniform and shining boots of the man on the horse and looked forward to taking them off later.
I have rolled my eyes at my own behavior and then gone about it anyway, smooching in the Wal-Mart aisles and tickling in the aspen groves. I have teased and laughed and been very conscious of all the ways I shut down, close off, protect and defend against people who might, only just might, hurt me some amorphous someday. I have dragged out my introverted habits by their tails and held them up to the light only to realize the only one chewing on the slippers and peeing in the house is me. But I don’t scold them, no never that. I just stop feeding them until someday they might turn into little dust bunnies and blow away.
As I continue on, I find the great wide world is so much more interesting, so much more perfect in its every moment than all my little mental worrying ants and drifting birds and misbehaving dust bunnies.