Dangerously Daydreaming

"All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible." ~ T. E. Lawrence

The Big 2-5 Skydive!

Happy Monday to all!

I’m coming back from the weekend high (pun very much intended) of skydiving for my 25th birthday.  It was incredible!  No exaggeration, it truly was a phenomenal experience and I might just be hooked.  Skydiving really is a dream come true for me, I’ve wanted to do it for 10 years now.

My birthday was unforgettable.  I think I mentioned that my dad and youngest brother are visiting me over the weekend.  They’ve been crashing on the floor of my tiny studio house – very close quarters for 3 people but I’ve enjoyed having them here.  Just after noon we made the drive down to Skydive Snohomish.  We met up with one my girlfriends (T”) who wanted to join us on the dive.

Before too long we were watching a video in the lobby, practicing our skydive positions on the floor, and feeling the butterflies in our stomachs.  Our group of 4 was the first to be loaded on the plane according to the manifest, so then it was to the Tandem Staging Area.

We each were introduced to our personal skydive instructors.  My instructor was a guy named Luke “Skywalker”.  He handed me a navy blue jumpsuit and helped me into the full-body harness.  A little chit chat and a few moments later we were heading to the plane.  It was definitely the smallest plane I’ve ever been it, no insulation on the inside, no chairs, seat belts were attached directly to the floor.  We all sat down between our instructors’ legs and they attached our harnesses to theirs.  Seated backwards in the plane, we were facing the plexiglass, sliding, overheat door at the end of the fuselage.  Our pilot had us taxiing down the runway and in the air within minutes.  It took about 15 minutes to climb to 14,000 feet above the clouds.  J was the first one out of the plane, followed by DJ, then myself, with T bringing up the rear.

Luke and I scooted to the doorway, I grasped my harness in a safety position, let my legs and head fall back and then we were dropping through the air.  I could help it, I started laughing like a fool (full disclosure: you could probably call it giggling).  We were free falling for a full minute that passed in a blur of speed and exhilaration.  I could barely breathe, we were falling so fast that the wind took my breath away.  For that minute I couldn’t stop laughing.  Out in the distance I could see the Seattle skyline, beautiful Puget Sound, the Cascade Mountain Range, everything.  And the ground looked like a patchwork quilt.

Then Luke popped the chute.  It’s nearly bone-jarring to go from falling at 120 mph to suddenly only 20 mph.  Luke had been video taping my dive with a camera and when he pulled the rip cord the force was so strong that the video camera smacked me in the mouth.  I could taste my own blood but it seemed a small issue in the scheme of things.  We were now floating gently in the air and I could see J and DJ floating by too.  We waved wildly, laughing.  Luke pointed out some of the major landmarks to me.  I could see why he’s been an instructor for 10 years now, the views were breathtaking.  Luke handed me the control cords for the parachute after a while and I got to send us into dizzying spirals.  A short 5 minutes later we neared the ground and landed easily.

I was unclipped and saw DJ walking towards me, ready with a big hug.  And then J was right behind with an embrace.  We had made it through such an amazing experience together and were overwhelmed with a sense of comraderie!

A birthday celebration I won’t soon forget!


20 comments on “The Big 2-5 Skydive!

  1. ethelthedean
    June 4, 2012

    Happy birthday beautiful lady! I’m so glad to hear that you have had an absolute blast with your fam 🙂

    You are far braver than I – I’m not sure I could ever skydive. But I love to see the snaps of your adventure!

    • Audrey
      June 7, 2012

      Thank you so much! It was incredible, such a great day – I couldn’t have asked for more…
      Hey, there’s always ziplining or bungee jumping to get you started on the skydiving track. 🙂 I’d go with you!

  2. whatimeant2say
    June 4, 2012

    I WANT TO DO THAT! You are so awesome! Congratulations, and Happy Birthday!

    • Audrey
      June 7, 2012

      You should!!! So much fun and you would rock it! And thank you! 🙂

  3. captainariel
    June 5, 2012

    Amazing 😀 I’m glad your dream came true! ❤

  4. storiesbywilliams
    June 5, 2012

    First sea to sky and now this! Damn, I’m jealous, you get around. Oh, and happy birthday! Quarter century, woohoo! …sorry.

    • Audrey
      June 7, 2012

      Haha, oh yes, the quarter century – gees when you put it that way! 🙂 This definitely feels like we’re kicking off summer with a bang! Skydiving was unbelievable – if you get the chance, do it!

  5. susielindau
    June 6, 2012

    Happy birthday! Such beautiful photos. I have been considering this and would only do a tandem dive… So glad you brought this inspirational post to the party!

    • Audrey
      June 7, 2012

      Thank you, Susie! You should do it, it’s a phenomenal experience! 🙂 Seems right up your alley too!

  6. Worrywart
    June 7, 2012

    It’s going to be kind of hard to top that on your 26th! I’m sure you will though. 🙂

    • Audrey
      June 7, 2012

      I’ll have to get started planning this right away! 😉

  7. Writes2escape
    June 8, 2012

    That must be so awesome!
    You’ll remember your 25th birthday forever!

    • Audrey
      June 8, 2012

      Skydiving is definitely one way to make it a memorable day! 🙂 I highly recommend!

  8. theforgottenwife
    June 8, 2012

    That is so awesome! I went skydiving about 4 years ago. Definitely not hooked, but definitely crossed it off my bucket list. I think I’m more of a hang gliding kind of girl! Glad you had a terrific time! And next time you do this, make sure to wave to my parents for me – they’re in Silverdale! 🙂

    • Audrey
      June 8, 2012

      Nice! So you know how all of this goes. 🙂 Hang gliding? I have yet to try it but could see that being addictive too! Oh yeah, Silverdale’s right there. Do you get to come up for visits very often?

  9. Stuff I Can't Post
    July 3, 2012

    I’m a horrible friend! I’m catching up on the blogs…. and so happy belated birthday darling!!!! And OMG… you are way braver than I. Wow! You are awesomely brave!!

    • Audrey
      July 3, 2012

      Hey, life’s busy and it’s summer (plus you’ve got crazy projects and a new job coming up), I’m falling behind too right now.

      Thank you!! It was so much fun! I still can’t quite believe we jumped out of a plan, very surreal…

  10. Worrywart
    December 10, 2012

    Did you post the video anywhere? I am skydiving in Tokyo in January, and I’m trying to prepare myself.

    • Audrey
      December 11, 2012

      No, I wasn’t able to pull the video from the DVD they gave me… Such a bummer.
      I’m so excited for you, it’s going to be amazing!! I don’t know that there’s a whole lot that can prepare you for it. It’s a complete shock for the mind and body and goes against every instinct but it’s so fun and such a great experience. My boyfriend and I plan to take his nephews for their graduation gift next year. I didn’t think it would be something I’d need to do again, but it was such a great time that I really want to re-experience it. Best of luck and please, please keep me posted on how it goes!! You rock, lady!

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