I stand here, on the edge, peering down into Mother Natures’ mouth. The sounds of the birds and trickling water give me no strength, for as I peer down into the crystal clear the only sound I hear is adrenaline forcing my heart to pump blood to my ears. Even the fish know I am afraid. They open and close their mouths, laughing at, almost mocking my fear. My toes dig their way into the crumbles of the damp earth. The pressure is really on when I look at my friends surrounding the water hole death trap that I am supposed to jump into. They heckle me, wishing for their own adrenaline rush from watching me partake in a danger that they themselves are too cowardly to pursue. I allow the scent of the dirt and the sweet grass that is surrounding the bank to fill me with courage, and remind me of my place here in nature. After taking a final glance at the rocks at the bottom of the creek waiting to smash my bones to a pulp, I grab the rope and tuck my knees to my chin in one quick impulse. The wind whistles in my ears as I fly through the air. Tiny bright stars shine behind my tightly closed eyes. There is one final burn against my palms as I release. The fall lasts only seconds until, at last, wetness slaps my thighs like an old friend pats you on the back, glad you have finally arrived. Finally, after falling deeper and deeper into the belly of my Mother Earth, I rise back to the top, and am immersed in sunlight. I immediately spit the fishy tasting water that wiggled its’ way up my nose back into its’ home, but must embarrassingly admit, I enjoy the taste. Already, my cheeks are dry and growing pinker in the warmth of the sun.
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