It’s not that people are lying when they say that skydiving feels just like flying, it’s just that they’re not exactly capable of expression the whole truth.
See that expression? That’s me. Screaming loudly. Very much aware of the fact that I am falling.
Falling simply didn’t feel like I’d expected it to. My stomach didn’t drop. I didn’t feel like I was in trouble, not even during my screaming bout. I was surprised by the sensation of looking around and realizing that, for the first time in my life, there was absolutely nothing I could reach out to hold. I was plummeting to the earth – but it wasn’t a bad thing.
I was very much aware of the fact that I was traveling down at a high rate of speed, but I was also aware of what felt like a whole lot of wind just trying to hold me up – wind that was slowing my fall. I used to be skeptical about just how much like skydiving indoor wind tunnel facilities could possibly be, now I get it. I felt wind. I heard wind. My skin was rippling in the wind.
And with all of that energy seemingly committed to the single act of slowing the fall, it wasn’t scary. It was the hugest rush ever. Absolutely epic.
Added bonus? If you skydive and there’s a videographer with you, it gives you a glimpse into how you would look with Jennifer Garner dimples:
For this venture, I placed my life in the hands of Wellington, a Brazilian man who kept me chuckling as he checked out my harness, went through the safety instructions that would keep me from being killed, led me to the plane, and strapped me to his body. And it was thanks to him that I didn’t even stop to consider whether or not stepping out of the airplane was actually an example of poor decision making. It was just what we were going to do and it was going to be awesome.
And it was.
Once the chute opened and we were chatting above a stunning New England landscape, he returned the favor and handed me the reins. With a parachute strap in each hand, I navigated a new gentle twists and turns before he took back over and unleashed a tight set of corkscrews. We chatted about his years of diving experience, my couple of minutes worth of experience, and whatever else one talks about a few thousand feet in the air.
And then, what feels like ages and mere seconds later, we landed and I wanted to go up again.
Soon after, however, I discovered something that no one had warned me about. Everyone talks about the adrenaline rush. What they don’t mention is the fact that all that adrenaline keeps on pumping through your body once you’re back on solid ground and trying to do simple things. Like walk. And communicate. I felt as if I’d stormed a Starbucks and had downed a couple of triple espressos: buzzy body, jittery brain.
But a few post-jump jitters is totally worth that view. Without a doubt, skydiving is one of the coolest things I have ever done.
This morning, I had the priviledge of running in the inaugural Run to Home Base 9K, which began and ended at Fenway Park.
Not only was I able to help raise money for a good cause…
Not only did I get to feel the adrenaline rush that comes with taking to the roads with a couple thousand fellow running enthusiasts…
Not only did I get to feel like a superhero, zooming off of Lansdowne to pass security and make a beeline through the concourse and onto a sun-drenched field…
The Red Sox were so appreciative of my efforts that they put my bib number up on the outside of the ballpark. In huge red numbers, no less.
As you can see, I was touched by this gesture.
(In case you’re keeping track, that’s the second in the Fisk series. I never claimed not to be a dork.)