Yea, you read right: I Jumped out of a plane. At 13,000ft! Sky diving is something I always thought of doing, but had been waiting for an AMAZING location on my travels to do it in. You know what I’m talking about?— a city/country/area SO incredible that you just can’t help but think this MUST be the greatest place in the world to sky dive!! For instance, my friend, Ann, jumped out of a plane over the Swiss Alps: How cool is that!??
I wanted to skydive in Australia last year, but we never found time to fit it in between the many flights, traveling around, and scuba diving. It was one of those things that—once again—I waited and waited and waited for the “right time.”
Well, if there’s anything I’ve learned in life and travels and experiences: You really just can’t wait for the “right timing.” You can’t wait for the “right moment” in life. Because if you wait long enough, the “right time” may NEVER come . . . or it might just end up being too late.
So, this year as my birthday was approaching, it became my mission to finally go skydiving ONCE AND FOR ALL!! What I found pretty interesting and COOL, is the more I started talking to people about going, the more I found that many other people had been “procrastinating” for years and years like I had been, too! My solo skydive trip suddenly turned into a big group EVENT, in which I organized 10 other people and myself to drive down to San Diego to jump out of a plane from 13,000 feet up high!
We arranged a date and time, and we all grew extremely nervous and freaked out as the date came close. Unfortunately, it ended up raining the day of, so we had to reschedule our jump… And wait another couple weeks. BUMMER! Once again,
when the date came close, the clouds came out again and our jump was “threatened” by the weather. In the end, we decided to take our chances and drove the 2+ hours down to the San Diego area anyway.
Fortunately, the clouds eventually cleared up, and we spent half the day waiting and waiting and waiting to see if we would be able to jump today. Fortunately, it was a beautiful day outside and we all just sat down in the grass and suntanned or chatted. As we waited, we watched group after group get suited up, walk out to the plane, take off, and sail back down to the earth safely. After watching it happen over and over (about 5-8 loads of people), the fear of the whole act began to subside for me.
However, when they called our group for our turn, I took a big gulp. No turning back now! We divided into two separate groups, strapped on our gear (with a tandem instructor strapped to each of our backs), and piled into a small airplane. As the door closed and the plane sped up and left the ground, my heart began beating faster and harder and I thought, “What have I gotten myself into??” I can’t explain how SURREAL the whole process is. I thought I would have been more nervous as we began to climb altitude, but I still remained pretty calm.
UNTIL . . . I saw my buddy, Dave jump out of the plane in front of me. OH. MY. GOD!!!!!! I looked down out of the plane and saw him quickly disappear smaller and smaller into a speck of sand floating above this massive mountain range. And then, before I could decide for or against jumping out, my instructor launched us out of the plane and the absolute RUSH of falling, falling, falling engulfed me. It was exciting, but strangely enough not as exciting as I thought it would be. Why?—well, when you are falling, you just have wind rushing over your face and body, and it doesn’t really feel like you’re falling. It kind of just feels like really hard wind is blowing against you. I actually think it was more fun once the parachute opened, and the instructor—still strapped to my back of course—was swinging our parachute around, gliding down, and my stomach kept doing “fun flips.” The view below was beautiful, and we coasted for quite awhile before landing safely on the ground.
When it was all over and done, I was SO excited, happy, and proud of the whole experience! Not only for myself for doing it, but all the other brave friends who joined me!
It was an amazing experience of a lifetime, and something I would definitely love to do again!