The Audacity to Jump

I stood there. At the edge. Wondering–what if I jumped? What could happen to me? What if I fell flat on my face? Who would catch me? The walk of shame, would it be too great a burden? Would the jump make a big difference, anyway? Well, I did it. I jumped. I surprised myself with my courage. Right into my daddy’s arms. Although I’ve lived with him throughout my childhood, I had never known the tenderness of my daddy’s love. Either because I did not know how to receive it or because he did not know how to share it, nonetheless, I did not experience it. Until two weeks ago. It was an uncomfortable leap. Felt like I would hurt myself ( or my ego, pride, confidence). I called my dad (randomly) late Sunday night. We speak on the phone every two months or so. Not for any particular reason other than, no one has called the other. This time, I got the urge at 11:00p. When the urge to jump comes, don’t resist. He answered. I stumbled over my words and finally said, “I remember you said you had the flu, I’m calling to see if you’re ok.” “Yeah, I’m much better. That was two weeks, a couple days before Christmas.” “Oh, ok. Didn’t know if you were still down. Glad you’re better. What you up to?… The small talk lasted for two minutes and twelve seconds. I never got the nerve to go deeper during that conversation. I shrunk. Every moment breathing, there’s time to make a different choice. We hung up. I began shaking a bit. I wanted to be held by my dad that night and didn’t know how. Granted, he is in Chicago and I’m in New York, but I wanted to be wrapped in his arms. I was dying to see what it felt like. I got the audacity to send a text. It read, “Dad, what do you love about me?” 11:23p on a Sunday night, I waited for his response. There wasn’t one. I wanted to take my text back, it was stupid. Why would I send that, anyway!? 12:00a I conceded that jumping wasn’t worth it. Next time, I will stay on the platform, where I’m safe from looking (or sounding) crazy. 5:16a Monday morning, I woke up to these words– “What I love about you, Mia, is… Most every one says we’re twins. The fact that we both chew our tongue and the inside of our jaw. I love that you are good at decision making and I can count on you for that. I love your smile and presence. I love that where I failed and made mistakes, you choose to do the right thing for the right reasons. Baby, I can go on all night describing how much and why and what for. But I thank God you were born to me, not only because I have bragging rights, but I can safely say, ‘You did the damn thing.’ Sorry, it took so long to reply, I put my phone down, but as soon as I saw your messages, I responded right away. I love you, Mia.” My fear subsided. It was worth the jump. I was reminded that, my dad, no matter how infrequently we’ve connected, sees me. And by him seeing me have such courage, perhaps, his own courage to jump has been fueled. And my hope is that yours has, too. When I hold myself hostage, I am holding others with me. It was time to free myself. JUMP! Scared? Go Scared. Too Risky? Take the risk. You tried before and it wasn’t worth it? Try again! How have you or will you have the courage to jump this month? Can’t wait to read your comments! “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” Anais Nin I was held because I took the risk. I can experience love because I am available and open to it.

The Audacity to Jump (into my dad’s love)