The Space Between
What Will You Do Between Life and Death?
It was not so much that she had a fear of dying, she was actually afraid of the space between the time when you know you are going to die and when it actually happens. The consciousness of approaching death was making her knees feel like they were going to give out as she stood on the upper reaches of the church steeple. This was unlike any other church steeple Keri had ever seen. The top of Vor Frelsers Kirke, or Church of our Savior, was completed in 1696 by a man who desired to have the steeple able to be climbed by anyone who wanted to have one of the most spectacular views of Copenhagen. Rumor has it that the man finished wrapping the tiny steps up to the top and realized he had actually incorrectly constructed the stairway, wrapping it counter-clockwise up the steeple instead of the assigned clockwise manner, and jumped from the heights in a fit of desperation.
Keri could not stop thinking about how simple it would be jump from where she was at, the small protective wall barely reached over her knees. The group of friends she was with did not help; they were all pushing to get up as high as they possibly could, even though there was only space for one person to be where Keri stood. A gusty breeze made her hair blow in front of her eyes. As she reached for her hair, cautiously positioning it behind her ears, she pictured the architect jumping from where she stood and imagined the wind carrying him a bit to the left, probably landing near the sidewalk below. Some innocent passerby would most likely have had their day ruined by being in that place at that wrong time.
She certainly didn’t want to jump; she just felt how easy it would be to accidentally be nudged over the side. It was this feeling that Keri decided she wanted to avoid at all costs the entire rest of her life. She began thinking that humans are constantly moving through the space between life and death, even if they are mostly unaware of how that space is shrinking every day. That trip up the steeple was what it took for Keri to decide she had to begin taking control of her space.