24 may be an odd number to celebrate a birthday for a very special cause, but for me, each year is a blessing and should be celebrated as your last. I’m your “I refuse to have a cliche’ birthday dinner, so let’s go on a last minute road trip to the mountains or let’s even go scuba diving or something kind of gal’.” Yes, i’ve always thought that birthday dinners were cliche’ until the night of my birthday. Let me explain a little about birthday dinners. The last time I had a planned birthday dinner, I was in the 8th grade and made reservations to Gladys Knight Chicken and Waffles. What started off with inviting only 10 people, turned out to be double (and some of the people, I wouldn’t identify them as being a “friend”). Point is, either you have a birthday dinner and forced to invite people that you don’t want to come or the ones that you would identify as being a ‘friend’ don’t show up and makes up a lousy excuse. So for me it’s, come and do some crazy shit with me, or stay behind. When it comes to making plans in general, you just have to go for it, whether people are there with you or not. One thing you can always count on is ‘la familia’.
Lets rewind a little bit and let me explain to you why my birthday was epic and why next year, I have to go HARDER. Skydiving was something that I have always wanted to do. As soon as I heard SZA’s lyrics, “Dear God, make me a bird, so I can fly far far away”, I knew it was destined. That’s exactly the feeling that I wanted to have. I wanted to have the ability to fly and let go of all of my fears and negative thoughts. I wanted to feel superior, as if I was standing on top of the world. More than anything, I needed to feel free. Free from doubt, free from people making me feel shitty by telling me that ‘I can’t’, free from every negative thing life brings. This was by far the best decision I have ever made.
For me, I had an odd experience than others. It was told to me that I was crazy for traveling and coming skydiving by myself and that it is very rare for people to skydive alone. My response was simply, “time waits on no man, and I aint’ waiting.”
After speaking to numerous of people that work there/attends school there (this place is also a skydiving school) and learning that many have jumped over 1,000 times, I knew I was safe enough to jump at least once. It was amazing to hear all of the stories from ones that jump as a hobby. Think about it, how fearless and crazy do you have to be to jump out of a plane 14,000 feet high numerous times a day? VERY, and I was definitely here for it.
The best part of it all was standing on the edge of the plane and looking down, ready to jump. As we jumped, my body felt……… free. My negative thoughts disappeared, the thought of using the word ‘can’t’ would soon be out of my vocabulary. It was exhilarating. After the parachute was released, all I could do was enjoy the beautiful view. I never wanted to come down, I just wanted to….. fly freely.
Plan your next Jump:
Jumped with: Skydive Spaceland Atlanta
Cost: Around $250-$369 (if you want a video + pictures) w/o video: roughly around $199
What to wear: be very comfortable and wear sneakers with shoe laces. Shorts/leggings and a T-shirt is also the best route to go.
Things they do not tell you:
1. If you have motion sickness (I’ve discovered this when I had 3 flights in one day and ever since, flights makes me very nauseous), take supplement hours before and eat a small portion meal. This is ONLY if you get nauseous from motion sickness.
2. Check the weather for wind. The stronger the wind, the stronger it blows in your face. However, the stronger the wind, the longer your parachute ride will be.
3. RESEARCH the company before you go. For my trip, I drove out to the ‘country’ part of town by myself. I knew someone that jumped through this company and was willing to risk it. This is not normal (apparently), but i’ll take road trips by myself if I have too. Tranquility and serenity is everything to me.
Check out these amazing birthday bandage dresses!