Friday, March 5, 2010

Falling with Style

As many of you already know... I went Sky Diving last weekend... I wanted to talk about my experience here on my blog, however, so I could explain what it was like.

It started with my anniversary. Jeff wouldn't tell me what we were doing or where we were going, but ended up driving me to New Braunfels. We went to a little german restaurant, which was kinda gross, and while we were there, I started trying to figure out what his plans were. He claimed we were going to go to "german town" in New Braunfels, cause he knows I loved Germany. He said the rest of the agenda was going to be secret till the next day. By the time we got in the car, I figured it out. "Are we going sky diving tomorrow?" I asked. Jeff just stared at me and asked me if I'd seen some papers lying around or something. "No." I replied. Jeff remained silent. But by then it was too late. His answer answered my question, and I KNEW we were going. I felt slightly nervous but not that bad.

The next morning it hit me that I was hours away from jumping out of an airplane. On purpose. We got our sad sad excuse for a "continental" breakfast, and I made the mistake of drinking a caffeinated beverage. Those just make the anxiety worse, by the way. We then drove to San Marcos, found the Sky Diving place, and checked in. This is when I started really panicking. My heart was racing, I kept anxiously waiting for them to call my name. They called our friend, Chris, back first. He came out all decked out in a green jumpsuit and harnesses and stuff. Then they called Jeff back. Then me. They told me I had to wear the pink jumpsuit (sexist much?) no seriously, I was really happy I got to wear a neon pink suit as I fell from the sky. Really. It's one of my favorite colors. The guy I jumped with was really cool. He explained to me that my one real job in life was to make sure the moment we jumped from the plane that I arched my back. He told me he would let me know what else to do as we fell. Suddenly I didn't feel so scared. I had an experienced (10 years worth) jumper with me, who would basically do everything for me, all I had to do was arch my back and follow instructions! woohoo!

I also got the video package (Jeff and Chris didn't) which is why you won't see many photos (or really any photos) of Jeff or Chris. There is a video that I can't figure out how to load onto my blog. The camera guy thought Chris was my husband cause Jeff had already loaded onto the plane when he started filming. So I'm hoping next jump Jeff will get the video package so I can get some cool pics of him falling out of the sky.

After that, we loaded up on the plane, and I was right behind the two videographers and we all sat in front of each other, so our tandem buddies could hook up to us right before jump time. This meant I was the 2nd person to jump out of the plane aside from the two camera dudes. Jeff and Chris were further back from me. As we started flying I kept getting waves of panic, and then feeling fine. I felt fine most of the flight in fact, until I realized that we were going to 10,000 feet and I was only exiting the plane one way. Jumping. I was front row, you can't back out when you're front row. You just can't. But still, I STILL really didn't get that full on panic, that sinking in the pit of my stomach, until the door opened, and I was standing in front of it.

Here's a good view of what I was looking at...

Scary, eh? Well, it was for me. Luckily, I didn't actually JUMP from the plane... the man I was strapped to did.

Then we did a back flip. I was in such shock, I didn't know we did a back flip.. not till I saw the photos.

And then we started falling....
I really cannot describe to you what it feels like to fall towards the earth at speeds untravelled by the likes of me...

What I can tell you... is that it is one of the coolest sensations I've ever experienced!
I think it's amazing the photographer captured all of this. He must be an amazing sky diver.
I kept looking down completely stunned at the fact that I was free falling out of the sky, like a rain drop. I kept picturing the splat I would inevitably become if the parachute didn't open.
Seriously... my heart was going nuts.
But at the same time.. I was having SO MUCH FUN!

Luckily... my parachute did open!
The relief flooded through my body, and replaced fear with this incredible euphoric high...
I FELT SO ALIVE!!!!!!!!!!
After the chute opened, my tandem buddy did some fun spins and tricks on the way down. And I was able to enjoy it the whole time after that. No fear. I was slightly wary of the landing, but nothing like the falling.

When the time came to land, he told me to hold my legs straight out in front of me and to keep them there until he said.

We made it! I gave my instructor a big hug and thanked him for not killing me.
After that, Jeff, Chris and I went and ate some Thai Food, and then Jeff and I went shopping for some cute clothes at the outlet mall.
It was a WONDERFUL anniversary gift!

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