“Jump, you know you want to.”
The wind whispered seductively to me as it caressed my face like the gentle touch of a lover.
“You know you want to.”
It said again, and I smiled. I turned around to look at my beautiful wife having a heated discussion with the tour guide, no doubt trying to make him change the direction of our tour so that she could check out a particular site of interest. From experience, I know that she’s going to win.
No sooner had that thought crossed my mind did I hear the disgruntled guide announcing a change of plans to the group.
I smiled sadly to myself. She’s always been a force to reckon with. She came into my life and fanned the flames of my personal hell.
I turned to face the cliff again and allowed the wind whisper more seductive words into my ears.
“You can escape if you want to. Don’t you want to? It would be nice, wouldn’t it?” It said and I closed my eyes for a few seconds as I imagined it.
Oh! It would be nice! I wouldn’t have to deal with any more voices in my head, and I wouldn’t have to deal with the overwhelming and largely crippling feeling of mediocrity that has a firm grip on me.
The wind brought a different voice to my ears, my wife’s voice. Along with an image that I thought I was doing a great job of burying.
You’re so much better than my husband. A series of moans. A familiar deep laughter.
Of course I am.
I laughed bitterly, even as tears- sharp and angry gathered at the back of my eyes.
“You don’t play fair, do you?” I whispered.
“I’m only trying to get you to do the right thing.”
I sighed deeply and turned to look at my wife again. She was talking to a woman in our tour group, and in another time, I would have gushed over her beauty and maybe even gathered the courage to tell her that she talks as if she’s doing everyone a favour and if they knew what’s best for them, then they should listen. In another time, I would have fallen in love with her by just watching her talk.
In another time. But not now. Never again.
“You can make it all go away. Just jump.” The wind said desperately, and I cringed. The desperation in the voice sounded too familiar. It reminded me of another version of myself that I wished to bury.
Please, don’t leave me. I’ll do anything. Anything at all. Just don’t leave me.
I had agreed to this trip because I thought my mind could use a bit of cleansing, but here I was at the edge of a cliff listening to the wind trying to convince me to jump.
“Trying?” It asked mockingly, then laughed harshly. “But it’s working, isn’t it?”
I turned to look at my wife again.
“No.” I replied, a sad smile forming on my lips.
“Babe, are you coming?” She asked, smiling sweetly at me.
“Sure.” I said, an equally sweet smile on my face.
To the wind I said, “Jumping off a cliff is dramatic and pointless when you’re already dead inside.”
And I turned around to join my wife and the rest of the group.