No matter how hard you exercise on the ground, nothing can prepare you for the excitement that engulfs the space around you once the airplane door is opened and the wind starts pouring in. The wind is cold and unforgiving, but you do not feel it a bit.
The only thing you feel is the desire to move forward.
In my case, there were 2 instructors and another student on the plane. The plan was for us to jump on the static line and the instructors would jump afterward. I was lighter in weight so I had to go second.
The Skydiver that went first, Goran, was sitting by the open door for a while waiting for the instructor to find the perfect spot for us to be dropped off. Right there I could see it in his eyes, he felt amazed and humbled by the view.
He also looked crazy focused and ready to go.
I envied his readiness at that moment.
So after the instructor gives you a sign you’re supposed to:
- Get out with your preferred leg, and position it on a ledge outside of the airplane, just below the wing.
- Grab onto another ledge with your hand.
- Place your second foot outside
- Grab with the other hand
- Look left towards the instructor and wait until he gives you a nod to jump off
- Look up, release with your arms spread, legs slightly bent and arch in your back.
- After your static line deploys the Shute you spin it in the air and do all kinds of checks to make sure everything is ok.
- Proceed to steps for safe landing
So after Goran jumped out I was looking to see his pink student parachute, but I couldn’t.
It really bothered me I couldn’t see it, but that fear lasted only for a few seconds. Seeing that pink canopy flying proudly through the air meant the world to me at that moment.
I knew everything will be all right.
My turn came, I looked outside of the airplane, loving the view yet again, and proceeded to perform the pre-planned exercise.
I realized I have closed my eyes for a second once the chute was loudly opened in the air and a huge smile washed over my face.
I did it!
OK, I need to focus, look up and see if everything’s in place, pull the handles.
But I did it!
It was completely difficult to gather my thoughts at this point. Also crazy not to be able to scream at least a woo-hoo on my way down.
I knew a lot of the older skydivers would be there that day, and I might be laughed at, but I also wanted to have my own moment, so I did it anyway.
Here’s to life and overcoming fears.