Perceptions: Free fall?
As a child, I had a short list of repeating nightmares. There were several plot lines, but they all ended as predictably as an episode of The Road Runner. I wound up suspended over thin air like Wile E. Coyote, hurtling toward the jagged rocks below.
Growing older, the nightmares have subsided but the sense of falling has not. I cannot shake the sensation that I am accelerating toward my demise at thirty-two feet per second per second. I am not entirely clear what will happen when I go splat.
I do my best to ignore it, retreating to the false security of dogma, pretending that I am in control of this wild ride and know what to do about it. Other times, I deal with it by distracting myself with various pleasures and pursuits. Nothing stops the sensation of falling.
In spite of the fact that it is strange and potentially dangerous behavior, most fathers express love to their children by throwing them into the air. The look of wild eyed excitement as they sail along, and delighted relief when they land safely back in their father's arms is irresistible.
This explains why we get on a roller coaster, or go sky diving, or get married. We love the leap. So here we are: suspended in midair. What are we to make of our strange, airborne existence?
I am operating with the assumption that I have not been tricked by the Road Runner into jumping off a cliff. I believe that I have been tossed into the air by hands of love, and that the landing which I cannot help but fear will not be jagged rocks, but the safety of a father's arms.
Maury Robertson is a writer who lives in Yuba City. Contact him at email@example.com.