Spice scented breeze stirs me from sleep. It’s still dark as I ease myself from the yak wool blankets that have kept me cozy through the night and tip toe from my tent.

Outside my eyes turn skyward where infinite stars are awaiting me.

I pick my way through the Rhododendron laced path and shower on slate that shimmers beneath the moonlight to the melody of cicadas. As I dress I can’t shake this feeling that today could be the day I die.

The beauty that surrounds me is unimaginable — my connection to it, intimate.

Perhaps that is why I decided to jump.

Twilight begins to surrender to day as I make my way to the suspension bridge that threads one side of the mountain to the other.

I wasn’t even expecting to be here now. I’m in Nepal. Not content with life back home, I’d sought refuge abroad, far outside of my spear of reference. Mothered by the mountains and Monasteries of the Himalayas I’d traversed from China into Tibet before being moved on by the Chinese Government earlier than planned.

Just yesterday we had maneuvered ourselves across the boarder, passports and papers in hand,  amidst a blizzard snow storm. As the altitude dropped glacier bound mountains gave way to a dense and tropical jungle. Frozen streams thawed to life, to the delight of the passing hawkers who washed themselves in the foaming, frothy waters.  Eagles accompanied our descent, while we pealed off layer upon layer of clothing and watched the vegetation grow larger and greener.

When we arrived at our destination, it felt like paradise found. A number of activity were presented to us, along with a complimentary chai (as is customary). Perhaps it was the heady warmth of the famous Nepalese welcome, the sugar spice song of the tea or the euphoria of having completed a signature journey solo that helped me find myself but I found myself signing up for a bungee jump.

Not only did it feel right, but appropriate. Here was an opportunity to discard all the things that grounded me, weighed me down and evolve. I wanted to embrace life in free fall. I had confronted and let go of so much on this trip, I wanted to show myself I now had enough trust, faith and courage to leap into the unknown.

So I did. I stood on that bridge, took a deep breath and took flight. I said goodbye to the me I’d known and welcomed a future of my own design.

It was electrifying, exhilarating and terrifying. But it showed me I could fly. That day, I let a part of myself die.

Since then I have changed my life and continued to travel. Now I am a yoga teacher and yoga retreat leader, hosting yoga retreats inspired by my own passion for well being and wanderlust that I hope will help others become unbound.

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Katherine Smith_Taking Flight.jpg

Katherine is a yoga teacher and writer filled with wanderlust. She hosts yoga retreats across the globe intended to uplift, nourish and stir the soul. She has a finely tuned appetite for adventure and a healthy thirst for cocktails and coffee. Inspired by simple pleasures, Katherine is passionate about all things well being, making people happy and standing on her hands. 

Follow Katherine with her many adventures, upcoming yoga retreats and inspiring practice on KatherineSmithYoga.com.