We know stairs in the widest variety of forms. Often, made of stone and cold, or of creaking wood and covered in soft cloth. They may lead towards uncertainty, or to safety.
Those who use stairs ultimately find themselves other than where they began. Either higher up or lower down. The location changes, but so, too, does the person. Because their perspective is altered as a consequence. And regardless of whether you finally end up high above or far below, you should never remain standing right in the middle.
Climbing steep stairs up to the attic becomes a journey back to your own past. You discover things long forgotten. Memories are brought back to life and transport us to a whole other time. Stairs down into a dark cellar also lead us into a different period of our lives. The cold of the basement evokes thoughts we have been all too happy to suppress.
If stairs bring you all the way up to a roof in the middle of the city or the top of a tower somewhere in the midst of beautiful landscapes, your eyes are able to scan the bigger picture. Thanks to the greater distance sometimes necessary in order to view things in life objectively.
The role that stairs ultimately play for us personally, regardless of whether they lead up or down, is something that, like so many things in life, we have in our own hands. Whether we approach them with courage and strength, or the mere sight of them prompts us to freeze and become despondent.
That said: Rather attempt three stairs in a single leap and fall in the process, than squat motionless on the lowest step.