After Fred Jumped

“…fragile but free…”

-Lyric from Something About You by Level 42

 

Stop! Before you go any further, if you don’t know Fred, and “What Fred Did”, take a read now, and the below will make a whole lot more sense, hopefully.

 

Suddenly so aware of even the slightest of sensations, the hairs on his forearms stood on end and he felt the tips of his tattered shoes leave the ground as his body rose into the air. Higher and higher soared Fred when he jumped, that he didn’t think he’d ever come down. The view from up there astounded him and for an eternal moment, he felt the calm, the bliss, the peace that all freed souls must feel upon leaping into the void. Defying physics, chance, statistics, and all imagination, he opened his arms, caught the welcoming winds, and flew higher.

But then, right on schedule and sooner than he would have liked, Gravity’s long, steely fingers wrapped about his ankles and with one hefty yank, ended his ascent. The predicted and predictable post-jump drop began.

Fred fell so fast, he barely had time to brace himself, and he hit so hard that his meteoric impact with the valley far below created a crater and raised a dust and debris cloud so large as to blanket the sky and blot out the sun.

Falling down hurt, but he didn’t stay down for long. Staggered and staggering, arms and legs shaking, he pressed himself up, and in the dim of the darkness engulfing him, with only the fervent glow of his inner vision lighting his way, he went to work building his dream, forging his destiny…

 

I jumped a little over six months ago, and like Fred’s experience, it’s been…interesting…

It’s…a reminder that you must evolve daily if you are to make the vision that brought you to the edge a viable and true reality. It’s letting go of who you have been and embracing the one you were created to become. (Like I wrote about a year before the jump, the “me” I have been cannot and will not accomplish this huge task, but the “me” I am becoming can and will)…

It’s…crap breaking down when you need it not to, and it’s figuring out how to fix it yourself, or finding someone who can do it at a reasonable price, while praying everything else keeps on workin’…

It’s…working 7 days a week and realizing you really need 9 days in a week…

It’s…reams of 3”x5” cards covered in notes, reminders, grand ideas, odd little thoughts, and short and long lists, lying in piles in places in just about every room of the house…

It’s…going to bed sometimes frustrated, but thankful, with a head and a heart full of ideas that you can hardly wait to implement…

It’s…trying those ideas and when they don’t work, trying others, and then wondering what you’re doin’ wrong, learning from the outcome, and then formulating new ideas, new ways and methods, and trying those too…

It’s…finding the power to stay motivated when the light is growing dim…

It’s…cussing more than you probably have in your entire life…

It’s…praying for direction, a simple sign, or a quiet word, but not seeing or hearing or receiving even the barest hint, or tip, or whisper, but staying determined, holding on and pressing forward in faith anyway…

It’s…continually opening your mind to new and greater possibilities…

It’s…staying humble, learning, getting humbled, and learning more…

It’s…getting your hopes up, but then being let down…

It’s…taking a break not because you want to, but because that’s what you need to do…

It’s…pursuing the destiny filling your mind’s eye while questioning the path to that destiny…

It’s…trusting in the Unseen…

It’s…remaining fluid and adjusting to the ever-changing situation, weekly, daily, hourly, and sometimes, by the minute…

It’s…remembering that it really is up to you…

It’s…remembering to enjoy the moment…

It’s…smiling because this is not a dream…

It’s…hardly ever knowing the how but still going forward, remaining focused on the what and the why

It’s…being thankful for this crazy, wonderful, frustrating, pisser of an amazing, eye-opening, ever-evolving journey, this challenging, “fragile but free” life-path that you have chosen and that has chosen you…

It’s…all of the above, and…

It’s…so much more.

 

After seven months, Fred’s hard work began to yield a true, self-perpetuating harvest.   Finally, his dream was a reality, and now, as he peered back over the past year and gave thanks for the learning and grace of that time, he surveyed with peace the abundance of the present, and he gazed into the future with something more than hope and glimpsed the next phase of his strong and ever-increasing vision.

But a sonic boom followed by the most desperate scream interrupted Fred’s tranquil moment. Looking up and turn around, he saw what looked to be a person falling from the sky. Without hesitating, Fred took off toward the fast-falling man. Arms and legs flailing, the man smashed into the ground about a thousand yards away.

When Fred finally caught up with the man, the groaning faller was barely moving, but alive.

“Hey, you okay,” Fred called out, reaching down into the crater and touching the man on the shoulder.”

The man rolled over, and though thick dust coated his face and obscured his sight, he locked eyes with Fred and both men smiled in sudden surprise.

“Bill!” cheered Fred, “Bill! What, what are you doing here?”

“Fred!” Bill croaked, hoarse from screaming, “I, I jumped…”

You jumped? That’s great!”

“Yeah, yeah,” said Bill, “after you jumped, something changed for a lot of us… Some ignored this, this inner shift, stifled it, dulled its shine, others, at least two or four that I know of, jumped almost right away, but some, a few of us, started talking, and planning…” He sat up and paused for a few seconds to catch his breath. “Of, of the handful of us that quietly planned our jumps,” he continued, “I was the only one to actually take the leap… The rest…they backed down…they gave up.”

There was much Fred wanted to say in response, but he sensed Bill’s desire to share one more thing.

“You know, Fred, it’s…it’s because of your example that so many of us decided it was time to change our lives and really begin living. If you’d let the fear and the doubt kill your dream, well, I don’t know where any of us would be. Well, I, I guess I wouldn’t be sittin’ in this smokin’ crater right now, but, uh, I just want to thank you for…thank you for being damn crazy enough to do what you did.”

Taking a deep breath and holding it for a moment, Fred considered Bill’s words and finally understood how his jump all those months ago wasn’t even really just about him. He knew it would affect his life, his family, and his close friends, but he never imagined the impact his jump would have on acquaintances and on people he didn’t even know; because of him, their lives would never be the same. Truly, the domino effect of one man or one woman doing the right thing at just the right time can never be fully estimated or understood on this side of Eternity.

His heart swelling, tears filling his strong, gentle eyes, Fred reached down, grabbed Bill’s trembling hand, and lifted him out of the hole. “Well, Bill, you have a real hard challenge ahead of you, but trust me when I say, you are going to be more than okay. You’ll be so glad you jumped that you’ll not look back… ever. I’ve been through it, and I’ll be here to help you all the way.”

Still a little disoriented, Bill stood on shaky legs and dusted himself off. Walking together and sharing the dreams that had taken them both to the edge, Bill illustrated with vivid clarity the full depths of his vision. He and Fred had traveled barely half a mile when a sonic boom disturbed the calm, natural silence of the heavily cratered land. Immediately after the element-splitting boom, a woman screamed from on high. The pitch and the tone of the voice were immediately recognizable, and as the men turned and raced in her direction, they glanced at each other, nodded, and said, “Sally!”

 

 

 

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About malcolm2030

I started my formal study of a traditional Japanese martial art during my freshman year in college in late 1990 and in early 2017, I took a leap of faith and have been teaching traditional martial arts and fitness on a full-time basis. I enjoy researching and exploring topics ranging from health and fitness, brain science and quantum physics, to relational dynamics, energy, and optimum living. I believe that we all should be daily evolving toward our true potential; while there will be times when we fall back, or get pushed back, or knocked down, the sum of our steps over a given period of time should be forward.
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