The Disobedient Date

My stomach dropped to my ankles as I glanced over the edge. I couldn’t tell if he could sense the fear swelling in me. John Acosta. He was 5 foot 10 with caramel brown skin. I just had to swipe right. With his profile picture showcasing his muscular build, a smile with a set of beautiful teeth and dimples as deep as the ocean, I couldn’t resist the date offer. I had to see if this piece of God’s art was really wanting to spend time with me or if I was getting catfished. It was at that very moment, I realized I shouldn't have told him I was an adventurous and competitive person. I just wanted to peak his interest since he was in his bicycling gear in a few of his pictures.

“You said you like adventure and competition. So, I figured this would be something we could do. I’ll see you at the bottom.” He chuckled as he effortlessly flung his body over the edge.

I was mortified but his smile was refreshing. It cooled the fire blazing inside me for a small fraction of time.

“Not my idea of a rooftop lunch, but I’m up for the challenge,” I yelled through gritted teeth. Who was I kidding? I had a mini heart attack while riding the elevator up here. There is no way I am getting on the side of this 800 foot tower with my extreme fear of heights. I started to back up slowly but was stunned when I felt something as hard as a brick wall hit my back.

“Not so fast ma’am. That’s the only way down. The door is locked and won’t be opened again until tomorrow morning. It gets really cold up here overnight so I don’t suggest waiting.” A man's voice protruded through the wind.

My throat fell to my chest.

My body quivered as the equipment guy tugged and pulled on each strap. He explained where to place my hands and how to position my body but my attention was on the sky and how far I would have to abseil. He could sense my fear.

“The way you walked backwards when you bumped into me is the same way you are going to walk down this building. Keep your eyes on the glass windows and stay focused on your next step. Take deep breaths. You will be fine.” His pep talk was soothing. It was like he could hear the internal prayer I was saying to my Creator.

“Father God, your hard headed daughter has gotten herself in yet another pickle. Yea I know, I know. You told me not to get on the dating app and I did it anyway. Forgive me Lord. I have to do better. In the meantime, could you please get me out of this one? And if I must take on the consequence of being disobedient please see me safely to the bottom. In the name of Jesus it shall be done. Amen.”

My quivers went into overdrive as I took my first steps over the edge of the building. I looked down to see where John was. Big mistake. The distance between me and the tiny specs I happened to catch a glimpse of sent me into a panic.

“I can’t do this!” I screeched while stiffening my legs and hugging the lines for dear life.

“Hey, hey! No stiff legs remember.” The equipment guy grabbed my hands.

“This hand here and this hand here. Eyes straight. Keep your legs bent and slowly walk backwards. Concentrate on your steps. You can and will do this. John is under you and I am above you.” He gave me a wink and hand motioned for me to look straight ahead.

I closed my eyes for a second and whispered, “Thank you Father for this helpful man.”

“Tiny steps. Don’t look down. Tiny steps. Don’t look down.” I repeated to myself as I began my descent. I started to loosen up as I got comfortable in my step to hand rhythm.

If the equipment guy was a little cuter I wouldv’e told him I was no longer interested in his overly adventurous friend and asked if he was single. I wished I got his name so I could look him up later. I couldn’t believe I was still capable of being shallow while in a life or death situation. This world view of a biological clock and desperation to solve my own fear of dying alone has me being foolishly impulsive. Why am I like this? And why am I trying to figure this out on the outside of a skyscraper?

Before I could get back into focus I heard a WHOOSH and bird chirps surrounding me. The stabbing pains from their beaks on my neck and back cause my feet to slip and my face hit the tinted glass. A few seconds later I realized I was sliding down the building at lightning speed. I yelled for help but was unsure anyone could hear me. As I began to panic I felt my body slam into what felt like another brick wall.

“It’s okay I got you. I got you. Calm down. I got you.” John reassured me as he wrapped his arms around me.

“…birds…” I managed to cry out between sobs.

“It’s okay. I know. I saw the whole thing. Shhh. I’m going to turn you around and you are going to wrap your arms and legs around me. We are gonna walk down the rest of the way together.”

John tried to make small talk as we finished our adventurous date together but I was over it. It was nice to be carried, but not nice enough to risk the plans of a second date. Once we were all planted safely on the ground I took a moment to step away to thank God I was still alive and safe then I bid them farewell.

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