Wednesday, June 30, 2010

What "No Fear" Really Means

I have finally done the one thing I have always wanted to do. For YEARS I've watched people skydive over my parent's house and we used to think they had lost their fucking minds. But today? I jumped.

And obviously survived.

My cousin Rhonda and I waiting to suit up.
I'm not going to lie- I was pretty nervous. I've gone para sailing, which is not anywhere close to this, and I don't have a fear of heights. Actually- I don't know what I really fear aside from bugs and animals. And pedophiles. And Ke$ha. And Mormons. And Catholic Priests. But other than that- I'm not really scared of anything.

We had a "lesson" which basically consisted of us laying on our stomachs and pretending. Which, guess what? Is nothing like it is when you're flying through the air. SHOCKER. We watch a video that reinstates all of the paperwork we had to sign basically saying we could get seriously injured and/or killed but hey--- neither we nor our heirs can sue because we know that going in. Yeah- that kind of scares people going in.

We get to watch a group jump before us so that was good. It was good to see how they actually land close up because I've never seen that and I like to know fully what I'm about to do BEFORE I do it. Then we're told that we can't go up in the plane together. We were going to jump tandem with an instructor/professional but there was only one on hand that day, so yeah. I decided that I would go first because I know that if I didn't- there was a good chance I would pussy out. So I was going to go first and Rhonda would watch me not die, and then she would go. So I got all suited up.
And I felt like Amelia Earhart- no joke. I pretty much felt like pissing my pants. Thankfully, I peed and shit before I got there and I had no food all day so I was hoping I was pretty well cleaned out. But then my plan was to wear a pad, just in case, but guess what? I forgot that. Whoopsy.

So we (me and my tandem instructor guy, Dean) get into a very tiny plane with two other jumpers (solo) and the pilot. To say that I was crammed into a very small space is an understatement. I could barely breathe. We had to climb up to 11,500 feet altitude and I wish I could have taken pictures of what the ground looked like. It was absolutely amazing. Everything looks so tiny and insignificant.

And at some point, I got harnessed to Dean and that's when I thought I was going to lose it- but it's not like I had a choice. Like the only way you are going to get to the ground is to jump out of the damn plane. So all of a sudden Dean's saying "waddle waddle" which means he's getting me to the door and I hear him telling me to put my foot on the ledge....which is outside of the plane. I'm freaking out and before I could even protest, dude has thrown me out. Like we do the tumble dive out of the plane and I had to close my eyes. I have no idea what the initial 10 seconds looked like because I thought I was going to puke, my eyes were closed, my face was freezing and I had to struggle to breathe. When I finally did open my eyes it was so fucking awesome to basically feel like you are falling to your death. We did a free fall for about 30-40 seconds at 120 mph before the parachute goes out, and then we float. It is such a peaceful feeling. It looks fast when you are on the ground but it feels like forever. I think in total I was in the sky for about 7 minutes.

So I'm the little white parachute dot in the bottom left of the picture:
And here's me when I'm a little bit closer to the ground.
And the landing was a lot easier than I thought. I had visions that I would just fall on my ass. But I didn't- I landed on my feet and walked it out.
 And here's me when I walked back towards my mom, Matt, my kids, and Rhonda:
Seriously- it's something I never thought I'd have the guts to actually do it. I'm glad I did it, I'm glad I survived it, I'm not happy about my ears still being so plugged that I can't hear anything. It was such an amazing experience- I would recommend anyone to do it. Seriously- it wasn't NEARLY as bad as everyone hyped it to be. The initial 10 seconds are the worst because you feel like you are going to vomit and like you are plunging to your death. But it's weird because as I was in the plane I kept thinking about that. Like, what if I did die? Would I be ok with that? And I think I would be. I would be alright with that. Obviously I would like to do more in my life but if I end up dying doing something I've always wanted to do....then I can't think of a better way to go.

19 comments:

Annah said...

HONEY! YOU EFFIN DID IT! Good for you. I'm sooooo proud. Now scratch that off the list and write, come to Miami and party with Annah as part of your 30 before 30 :)

Where's my blog lovin' biatch!

jprp said...

oh wow girl, you are so awesome I can't even discribe your awesomeness! I was actually about to write you an email to see if you were ok, it's not like you to leave it so long between blogs! It looks like so much fun and you look so cool in all your gear! Well done, you are officially now my hero! xx oh, and thank you so much for your comment on my blog, made me tear up a little, but in a good way xx

Jen said...

So awesome! Sky diving is def on my summer to do list. Hopefully I get around to actually doing it!

Krysten @ After 'I Do' said...

SARA! You freaking ROCKSTAR!!! I am so so so proud of you, seriously! Way to do something amazing. I honestly can say I don't think I'd ever have the guts to do something like this and I think it's damn cool that you do! You're awesome!

____j said...

SOOOO excited for you! Glad you didn't pee on your partner dude. HA! I would totally try to do this if I weren't scared of heights. But who knows...maybe one day.

KenKen said...

Awesome, iv been thinking about doing it for awhile. Great story.

http://www.kennedycullen.blogspot.com/

Amber said...

Congrats congrats congrats on wiping another thing off your 30/30 list!! You fucking rock girl.

But, hell, YOU know that!

Determination said...

Damn I could almost feel what you were saying in this post... we just had some good friends go skydiving and I wish I would have done it as well:)

MeredithDuck said...

Yikes, you're much stronger than me. I think I just had a mini panic attack reading all of that. Maybe...maybe some day. :) Congrats!

Ang said...

congrats on still being alive!
I skydove (skydived?)... went skydiving several years ago and LOVED it .. hurt my back pretty bad when they pulled the cord, but healed with time!

Sam said...

HEY HEY! You did it! You look like you had fun, hell the after picture looks like a kid at Christmas who just got a puppy, three ponies, and an easy bake oven. :) Glad you enjoyed! Now get on with the Eclipse review!!

thotlady said...

Congratulations!

I have a friend who skydives as a hobby. He has jumped quite a few times. He told me it's an expensive hobby. He tried to get me to go with him once, but I didn't want to spend the money. Now I wish I had.

Awesome!

Gini said...

SQUEEEEEEEE!!!! YOU DID IT! I'm so glad you're alive (not that there was much question)!

Have you tried hopping up and down? That works for me when my ears are plugged from swimming, but obviously this is different. Still, maybe.

Jenn said...

Congrats on accomplishing a goal (and living to tell about it!) You look absolutely elated wlaking back to your group. Amazing!

Natacha said...

AWESOME! I am so jealous! You did it! Congrats!

Mom Taxi Julie said...

Woohooo you crazy girl! That's so awesome!

FinnyKnits said...

That's awesome! Congrats! And good job not dying.

Bubba's trying to talk me into this (he's certified to jump solo), but I'm still on the fence.

Chicken said...

I'm so glad that you made it, and nobody is scraping lamb guts off the pavement! Although, I was really looking forward to inheriting some of your goodies.

Another David said...

AWESOMEAWESOMEAWESOMEAWESOMEAWESOME!!!!! :D