The Path and the Edge

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We all walk through life, most of us without any knowledge that this cliff exists. The edge that is there that if we cross – we’re done. I am talking metaphorically of course; not the actual Cliffs of Dover (although if you walk off that you are indeed done as well)

I’m meaning the edge of mental health wellness. Most people wander along so far inland (mentally healthy) that they don’t see the cliff. They may be aware it’s there but they don’t see it. Maybe they’ve heard about it from others or know someone who has gotten too close and come back or even someone who’s fallen off… but they’re ok.

Then there are those of us who come close enough to see it and smell the scent of what it encompasses. The depression, the fear, the sadness and the apathy… and so much more. Most of those that see it wander and come away from it again to go on their way, safe and all right. Sometimes they wander near again and again, but always back to safety they end up going.

There are those who spend their whole lives traversing close to the edge, dangerously close at times and barely less so at others… but always with that drop in sight. A hard path and a tiring one… but sometimes in the sunshine so that even though the edge is there it’s still sometimes not a bad way to walk.

Then there are those who walk so close to the edge… for so long.. and without the heat or brightness from the sun… those that start to move towards the edge even more closely. Knowing the danger and the potential… and starting to embrace it and even seek it… as a means to end the walking and the path that is just too hard.

Some take a running jump and leap, impetuously and with very little forethought… others walk so long and think so hard and then take a steady pace and are over the edge resolutely… some sit for what feels like forever, legs dangling over the edge as they contemplate and muse, then quietly – almost silently – slip off and are gone.

We all live within the edge… most have never felt it’s pull and so many of us that do feel it stay on this side of it. So many find that the edge is the only place that they can end their journey. Willie did. Missing him more than ever right now.

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