Modern suspension is not practiced for any single reason. Rather than a cultural practice, it has become an individual practice; a personal choice made for a myriad of reasons. Adrenaline, endorphin rush, spiritual consciousness, meditation, conquering fears, rite of passage. Perhaps the most simple explanation offered is that all those who suspend are trying to "attain some sort of experience" (suspension.org). Often much of the struggle we have in accepting other people's choices or practices that we don't understand is that we are looking for some sort of answer, something that will make things clear and more comfortable for us. Some things, though, are arguably better understood if taken at face value.
It took over an hour for Myjah to suspend herself, slowly adjusting to the different pressures and pulls of the hooks. It was a careful and methodical process. After a few minutes had passed in the air, she seemed to be experiencing a state of euphoria. Hanging by her knees from a tree in her parents' backyard, the sun filtering dappled light through the leaves, I watched her swing through the air, quiet.
Myjah wrote to me from Colorado a week ago. She wrote that she has a fear of stagnancy, of "moss growing on my skin". She gets caught up in the experience of things, making it difficult to set up and achieve short and long term goals. Then there was an obvious pause in her writing.
"That anxiety...didn't exist when I was upside down."