The Redcliff Review – Wilderness
January 25, 2018
The Redcliff Review – Steamboat
March 7, 2018
The Redcliff Review – Blog Series No. 2 by: Ryan Walton


Six years ago, I was one of those people that stood on the top rung of their balcony railing and jumped. Yup, that person. I landed, many stories later, with a heavy thud and a thirst for something far more significant out of life.

Let's back up. On that cold, snowy, December day, I was living just outside of Washington, D.C. in a small apartment. A life consumed with work that afforded me possessions, devoid of happiness and reeling of squandered potential. For those readers familiar with Tyler Durden, it's the proverbial 'working jobs we hate so we can buy [email protected]^! we don't need.' And wow, did I do it well. We had just experienced a massive snowstorm that left our city paralyzed by the ensuing weather. A site to see and a moment to witness, so I walked out onto my balcony. As I closed the sliding glass door behind me, I had a horrible realization. In front of me, was a world I didn't know, and behind me was everything I knew, everything I owned, so much of what I hated, loved, valued, needed, and relied upon -- what a thought. A world separated by a glass door. So, as the story goes, I leaped.

"Failure isn't fatal, but failure to change might be."

John Wooden

The moment of cascading to the ground like flakes falling from the sky wasn't a moment of desperation, depression, or thrill. It was a hope to get something decisive set in motion. A change. I needed to break free of my failures to launch into actual life - my life.

Sometimes, the catalyst for change has to be uncomfortable, and undoubtedly daunting. Controlling that moment of life for me, lead to working in a field that helps adolescents and their families create that same impetus, without having to climb their railings. A humbling notion.

It's okay to fall, and it's okay to fail, but you've got to be willing to get up and step out onto the balcony.

Learn more about the wilderness experience at RedCliff by visiting us on the web, watching our YouTube videos, or reaching out to me at [email protected]