I stood at the edge, my toes lined up against the harsh horizontal line in front of me, separating me from open space. I barely had a moment to register the gorge gaping wide in front of me before the guide started counting down quickly… “5, 4, 3, 2, 1!”
I bent my knees slightly, pushed off, and plunged into empty space. Falling, falling, falling…
Unable to breath, wide rushed passed my face as I free fell for 7 seconds before the bungee cords gently started to stretch, slowing me down and yanking me up and down for a minute. I hung there, limp and unable to coordinate my limbs into anything remotely graceful, filled with adrenaline and trying to catch my breath as I guide came down and hauled me back up to the Bloukrans Bridge, at that time, the world’s highest bungee.
I’ve never been afraid of heights, and I had no reservations about bungee jumping whatsoever. Until I stood at that edge and looked at the gaping emptiness, a trickle of a stream meandering through rocks several hundred feet below me. But at that point, standing on the edge, I knew I had no choice to jump.
Partially because I had seen the guides push anyone who showed the slightest hesitation. 🙂
But mostly because I had 100% committed to that point, and I knew if I allowed my temporary fears to gain control at that time, I would regret backing down.
How often do we face this same situation in our everyday life? We’ve fully committed something…a project, a goal, a trip, etc. And then that crucial moment comes when you know it’s your last chance to get out, and the fears and uncertainties become overwhelming.
I’m sure I’m not the only ones who faced this, and not just starting on a bridge with a bungee cord attached.
Sometimes, we need to push aside our fears and realize that we aren’t in life alone. We have friends, family, coworkers, strangers on the street, and God rooting for us. We have our own bungee cord. But let me tell you something: [bctt tweet=”When you’re standing on the edge, you can’t see the bungee. You can only see the leap.”]
Don’t forget about the bungee. Because you aren’t doing life alone, not matter how you feel in the moment.
And sometimes we just need someone to push us off the ledge, when our fears become paralyzing and we can’t move one way or the other. Sometimes the same people who serve as your bungee cord will be the ones who push you onward. Not to be mean, but because they know that is the direction you need to be headed in.
I will never regret bungee jumping. It was a terrifying, wonderful experience that I would repeat in a heartbeat. And the times in life when I’ve jumped off the proverbial ledge in faith? I don’t regret those either. It doesn’t mean things went smoothly and everything was wonderful. It just means that the good outweighed the bad, and being stretched and challenged was worth it.
And never forget the bungee cord: the people you can’t see who are right there with you, cheering you along and sometimes pushing you forward. Because after you’ve jumped, they’ll be there holding up and celebrating with you.
This post is part of my #write31days series for 2015: Living Brave. Each day in October, I will be posting about living brave and what that looks like in everyday life. Curious about 31 Days? Check out the website and the hundreds of other bloggers joining in this year: 31 Days.