Living with {Proactive} Courage

“We should probably be doing this with climbing equipment”, I thought as I surveyed the crossing which perched us on a sandstone ledge 300 feet up in the air.

The toe bed in my favorite orange Asolo hiking boots were wedged into the two inches of flat rock that acted as the tiny bridge before sloping down and dropping off the edge of the cliff. This was the only way to cross the dangerous ten foot section of the trail and to get into the ancestral Puebloan ruin known as Penthouse.

My first attempt of crossing foot over foot like on a tight rope proved too dangerous as one wrong step could result in a long fall. Instead, we had to stay on our toes, leaning forward into the rock a few feet in front of us, and grasp for any small hand holds that could help support our weight that balanced on the tiny ledge.

“Just face the rock and feel the gravity of it pull you in and we’ll get through it”, I confidently reassured Jocelyn as my own doubts about our success began to surface. It’s this phrase of “feel the rock pull you towards it” that she hates the most, but it’s always the one that feels relevant to me.