The Glass Staircase

What does it feel like to be walking on air?


The closest I've come to that feeling is when I was walking up a glass staircase. The first few steps are filled with wonder! The novelty in the idea is terribly alluring. The direct view of what's below makes you feel strangely powerful, almost like you were above it all.


Few more steps in and you have adjusted to the novelty. Its the new normal, but the distance between the ground and you has substantially increased, and the possibility of falling through suddenly strikes you. And there's a strange feeling of foreboding.


Around the middle of the staircase, you become a little slower, a tad bit more cautious, a little bit more cognizant of each step and its placement. The glass is of the same strength as before but gravity has never been more real and terrifying. Honestly, if you fell from this height, you would probably just injure your ankles. But reality is now a mere illusion for the fear of falling is greater than the ability to rationalize.

But you have to reach the top now, for going back down feels like an almost sure shot fall! So you climb. Heart in mouth. Trying not to look down. Holding on to the railings for dear life. Steps slower than those of a prowling predator; more deliberate than the choice of clothes you wear. Your body has never seemed heavier and your mind more singular in focus.


You're on solid, non-pellucid ground now. You take an instinctive turn to see the sheer drop you have scaled. Hand automatically pats the heart. The maker is thanked under your breath. And suddenly you feel a little silly. It's not even that high. It's just as solid as your current ground. It's quite secure and sturdily built. And as you move on, you grudge yourself the courage you needed to scale a mere glass staircase. Scorning yourself, you promise that you'll never be this silly again.


Courage, when scorned, turns to a deliberate static existence.

Journey, when easily discarded, diminishes sense of self.


So what would you look for, when climbing your next glass staircase?


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