Climbing Volcanos

26 May 2013

I used to shudder at the thought of him and his sister climbing up on cliffs and other high places. Now I just wish she was here to have gone with them. Actually, she was so bada$$, they would have had to try to keep up with her. That makes me smile and cry at the same time.

This was a comment on a photo of my son and stepdaughter who'd been climbing the cliffs near my house. Kaylan started climbing at a very young age. She climbed up and sat on high places to relax and clear her mind. It used to scare me half to death to see photos of my kids climbing volcanoes together. I knew that they jumped from high places into the rivers around the house. Their wildness - especially hers - terrified me.

For all these years I've regretted discouraging her from skydiving and free climbing. Somehow I thought that if I had encouraged her she would have gotten it all out of her system and not died. Then last month my friend's sister died of suicide in the same manner as my daughter - and on her facebook page is a giant grinning photo of her skydiving. Guilt is so often a lie. I've been told that it's best to acknowledge the guilt as if it is an irritating neighbor, say hello briefly, and move on.

Erica KitzmanComment