because I’m afraid

Wifey and I were on vacation in the mountains and spent an afternoon at a hot springs pool. We lounged around and relaxed. Nearby there was a swimming pool and a high diving board.

I am not a strong swimmer, having been mostly self-taught in the calm waters of the Northumberland Strait. I am careful around water though not fearful. Still, because I am cautious, I’ve never used a diving board.

I watched for a long time as people ranging from children to older adults went off the board. Noticing me looking at it, Wifey asked “are you going to jump off the board?”

“I’m afraid to do it.”

I settled back into our soak. Taking in the minerals and healing balm of the natural hot springs.

When it was time to go, I said “I just have to go jump off the diving board.”

“I thought you were afraid?” she said.

“I am. That’s why I have to do it.”

I climbed the dozen steps to the top of the high dive. I calmly walked to the edge.

I was terrified.

Then I jumped.