Honestly, this should probably be “venture 0” since it happened a few days ago, but I was having trouble getting a name for the blog, and therefore couldn’t post about it in time lol. So…forgive me for being a little behind. My bad 😶
Sunday, May 1, 2016. The day I jumped out of a plane. Well, more like was pushed. Tandem, of course. And I actually enjoyed it. It’s always been something I’ve considered doing at some point. I just never made a point of doing it. But that all changed due to a young man named Dyar and his crazy antics.
It all started a few months ago when Dyar mentioned going skydiving with his brother and asked if I’d be interested in going (jokingly). I declined, but told him I’d think about it as a possibility in the future. Fast-forward to a few weeks later at a get-together I had for my birthday. Dyar hands me an envelop with my “gift” inside. I open it ,and, low and behold, I find what appears to be a tandem skydive ticket. Purchased and ready to be redeemed. I panicked a little inside, but, after a few hours of taking it in, I came to terms with what was to come. I began to get comfortable with the idea of actually going through with jumping from a plane. I begin to express my newfound excitement to Dyar, and that’s when he responds, “I feel bad. I can’t let this go on any longer. The ticket is fake.” I, surprisingly, was a little saddened. I was looking forward to doing something new and daring, and just like that, it was gone. But soon after the sadness passed and I moved on to relief. I wasn’t going to have to jump out of a plane anymore! Lol. Talk about mixed emotions. Fast-forward again a few months, and I get a text from Dyar saying that he and some co-workers were ACTUALLY going to go skydiving. Would I care to join? My initial response was, “haha. no thanks.” But I found myself questioning my decision and asking myself “why not?” Why was I not taking up this opportunity when I knew good and well that I had an interest in doing it, and the offer doesn’t present itself everyday? The next day I text Dyar saying that I think I had made a mistake in declining the offer. He responded telling me that the offer was still open. So I took it. All I needed to do was buy a Groupon for the discount and he would add me to the list of people going. And that was it. I was officially going skydiving. And I was quite content with the decision.
So here we are. The day of the skydive. Of course, I spent the night before looking at videos on Youtube of people skydiving so that I could have some sort of idea of what to expect. I thought that watching the videos of these other daring souls placing their trust in another human being strapped to their back ,with what you pray are “working” parachutes, would make me stressed and nervous about my own upcoming jump. But it didn’t. I felt more at ease. It looked a lot less nerve-wracking than what I envisioned. And so, I slept well that night. The next morning came, and we were scheduled to begin prepping for our jump at 11 a.m. My mom and I got ready and headed for Oceanside at around 9 a.m. I was the first of our group to arrive. There would be 9 of us total. Gradually the others came and we were all introduced. Most of the others were co-workers and friends of Dyar and their respective spouses. We were all anxious and excited for what was to come. This would be the second skydive for Dyar and two others in the group, but we all appeared to be equally nervous. It was a chilly and cloudy morning so we were informed that there would be a delay until the sky cleared. We were advised that we might want to grab a bite to eat or find something to do around town, as it could be a few hours before the sun came out. If it would come out at all. So we left and got breakfast. About an hour had passed before we got a call informing us that the weather conditions were better and that we could start preparing to head back and get ready for our jump. We returned to the airport at about 1:30 p.m. to find that they were indeed preparing groups to jump. Unfortunately, there were about 5-6 groups ahead of us, and there would be about 20 mins between each jump. So we were left to wait again. So we waited and waited and waited. Finally, 4 o’clock rolls around and the first 5 in our group were called to suit up for their jump. This meant in a short 20 or so minutes it would be my turn. We watched the first 5 get their gear on, climb into the plane, and fly off. About 10 minutes later I hear “Breeann!” It was Joe. The man that I would be entrusting my life to as we fell from the sky. (My name is not Breeann, by the way. It’s Breeawn. But I didn’t feel any particular need correct him. What did it really matter in the scope of things? Plus i’m so used to the incorrect pronunciation that it rarely phases me anymore. Hence why I stick with ‘Bree’. It’s easier on everyone). So, Joe straps on my gear and we’re good to go. We take a few pictures before we depart. I say my I love yous and goodbyes to to my mom and my best friend (and ex-boyfriend 😅), David, and on the plane we go. Oh yeah! did I forget to mention that I have no conscious experience of what it’s like to be in a plane? Cause, yeah…that’s just another venture to cross off the list today. (My one and only prior plane experience was a flight to New York when I was 3 years old. So, of course, I have NO memory of that.)
So we’re all jammed into this 15 passenger plane, slowly ascending, and the feeling is amazing. I’m loving every minute of it so far. I look out the window and everything gets smaller and before I know it I see this beautiful, blue, glistening surface below. We’re over the ocean. The view is breathtaking. Thankfully, it helped to put me in such a peaceful mood that I wasn’t even stressing about what was to come in the next few minutes. All I could think about was what I was taking in at that moment. Then the plane turns around and we head back over land. My serenity is gone and reality starts slapping me in the face again because Joe starts tightening my gear and, before I know it, the door opens…
Freezing cold air comes in and hit me like a freight train. The first 2 people make their way out with their pros before I know it. All of a sudden I see the guy ahead of me fall out like it was nothing. Joe starts getting me pumped up and ready to go, and we start making our crawl to the door. Now there was no training or class of any sort prior to this. All I had was Joe’s instruction to lean my head back and arch as much as possible. “You can’t arch enough” is how he put it. So we’re at the door, I put my legs out, lean my head back, arch my back, and, without warning, we’re falling. It took about a good 2-3 seconds before I realized that we were actually free falling and for my body to react. But once it hit me, I was holding onto the straps for dear life. Literally. I wouldn’t let go, even though Joe kept tapping my arm. I was aware of nothing going on around me. I was still trying to make sense of the fact that I was FALLING FROM THE SKY! Haha. Joe finally pulls at my arm and I realize that I needed to let go and put my arms out. But after that, it was nothing. It’s like my body suddenly acclimated to the fact that it was traveling at 120 mph. All I felt was wind pressure. Then my goggles started coming off lol. Just my luck. They were riding up my face slowly, and eventually started pushing into my eyes. Now all I could think about was keeping the goggles from flying off. I eventually resort to just holding them on with one hand so that I could have my full attention on the experience. And it was fun. I had forgotten about the “danger” and was just taking it all in. Before I knew it, Joe pulled the parachute and we were just coasting. It was exactly how I had imagined floating would be. You’re just hovering in the air. Nice and smooth. There were a few times that he did some maneuvers that picked up the speed a bit, but I enjoyed it. We slowly made our descent and landed without a hitch. And that was it. I had experienced my first tandem skydive.
We hitched a ride on the shuttle that came by to bring us back to the main office area, took off our gear, got our videos, filled out comment cards and left tips to our respective skydive professionals, said our goodbyes, and everyone headed home. The thrill had come and gone and just like that, I was right back on to living my life as though nothing had happened. Luckily I have footage to remind me of this major feat. The day I fell from the sky and survived. Well, it wasn’t as serious as I make it sound, but hey, it’s not your everyday thing either. Would I do it again? Yeah, one day. I have to give my body a chance to recover from the trauma hahaha. I’m totally kidding. But, yes, I could see myself taking on the thrill again someday. But I’m glad that I took up the offer this time around. And I’m proud of myself for not letting fear get in the way of me living my life and taking a step in living out my #lifedream. ⭐️
For anyone in the SoCal area who might be interested in skydiving, here’s the link to company that we jumped with:
Like I mentioned, there was a Groupon to discount the total price. Not sure how often it’s offered.