Co-Worker: I thought you were afraid of heights.
Me: I am. Kinda.
Her: Well, you seem fine.
Me: I hide it well.
I’m afraid of heights.
But not in the way you might imagine. There’s particular type of suicidal thought called the “Call of the Void” where, at a very high height, some people feel an incredible urge to jump, even though they don’t wanna.
It’s part of the original siren’s song.
When I was younger, I avoided open heights on the reg because the urge was so strong. It’s part of why I lived in basements and ground floors for essentially my entire life.
This fella named Rudolf Diesel invented the, well, diesel engine. But, he was so convinced that it would be failure that he killed himself. He jumped from a ship into the sea, unable to resist his siren’s song.
Not soon after he killed himself, his engine became the standard of Europe and of most of the trucks here in the US. If only he ignored the song for just a little bit longer.
I’m not – at all – suicidal right now. But I remember hearing my siren’s song a lot, throughout the years. It was partly Diesel’s story that kept me from jumping.
The idea that, maybe it’ll be somehow ok if I hold out for just a little bit longer, keeps me going.
I bring this up because I saw a buddy recently and he was in a funk.
Him: It was like the start of a depression. But, not depression.
Me: I call that “bummed.” It’s a feeling of general boredom, sadness, and hopelessness all in one. I feel it too. You have to be careful it doesn’t snowball into a full depression.
Him: Yeah. I feel it.
Funny, I always feel it, like Jacob Marley’s chains.
Link by link, and yard by yard…
Location: outside, feeling the sun on my face, if just for a bit
Mood: So. Damn. Hot.
Music: It’s like a part of me must love it (Spotify)
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