I was reminded of 1 of the most amazing moment of my life when I came across this phrase “Don’t wait. The time will never be just right.” Do you have a bucket list of items and life experiences that you would like to achieve and fulfill before you die? Well, I do! And there it was, on the top of my long list – To take the plunge and skydive! After many missed opportunities (5 times, to be exact) to skydive in New Zealand, I finally took a leap of faith and jumped from 18,000 feet in the sky during my trip to Florida last year. Looking back, I am so thrilled that I did not procrastinate or allow fear to get the better of me and took my chance when I could. After all, I will probably never get the opportunity to skydive again as I would not want to risk further injuries on my ‘new neck’. While many of my friends think it’s outrageous to even contemplate about being trapped in a tiny plane so high in the sky, let alone to jump out of it; Skydiving is, however, something that I dreamed about doing my whole adult life. It is the epitome of all extreme sports and 1 of the must-do activities for the bold. Had I waited for another day to skydive, I would probably end up regretting it for the rest of my life as that missed opportunity would have meant a stolen moment, a dream never ever to be fulfilled with my second chance at life.
And that’s why, my friends, I want to emphasize on the importance of not putting things off just because you think there will be a better time to do it in the future. Trust me, being a self-proclaimed procrastinator, I have put many of my goals and plans on hold because of this very powerful word called ‘fear’ and 101 other excuses. Excuses such as, “I’m too busy with the flurry of day-to-day activities to do this or that!”, “I don’t have enough money, I’m broke!” or “None of my friends are interested in this and I feel like a loser if I have to do it alone.” Does any of these excuses ring a bell to you? When I reflect at the past 26.5 years of my life, I’m proud to say that I have accomplished more things, in many ways, than I actually thought I would and have lived an excitingly colourful life thus far. I don’t always travel the well-trodden path because the few times that I had ventured off the path, it certainly gave me some of my most amazing and unforgettable moments. Having said that, my biggest downfall is that I often let fear conquer some of the biggest and hardest decisions in my life so that is still something I’m working on.
To quote Ivan Turgenev, “If we wait for the moment when everything, absolutely everything, is ready, we shall never begin.” In other words, there is simply no time like the present to pursue the (realistic, let’s be realistic here alright) goals or things that you have put on hold for the longest time. Personally, I have fallen into dark times, countless of times during my injury/ still on-going recovery, where I felt that my days were no longer as productive as before and a general loss of purpose in life. Many times, I gave myself a dozen of excuses for the things I cannot do instead of focusing on the many things that I actually can do. However, now that I’m looking a lot less like a Frankenstein and with lots of encouragement from loved ones, I hope to be back on the road. I like to call myself a cocoon, waiting to be transformed into a butterfly! Haha. Likewise, I hope that you can have a good look at the things and goals that you are planning to do next and accomplish them sooner than later.
The no. 1 activity to achieve on my bucket list – Skydive. Completed.
Don’t Wait. :)
When I first heard that The Florida Skydive Space Center offers the world’s highest tandem skydive at 18,000 feet above ground, I knew immediately that there was no way I was going to choose to skydive at a lower altitude. I wanted my first (and eventually, only) skydive experience to be the most amazing as possible. Just how high is 18,000 feet? Well, Mount Everest base camp is located at an estimated 17,500 feet so this jump is slightly higher than that! And, I am not even required to don the ugly jumpsuit. Sweet.
The center prides itself as the only place in the world that the jumpers get to enjoy an aerial view of the NASA Shuttle Launch Pads, the Main Assembly Building and the Shuttle Landing Runway. This view would have been the icing on the cake for me, had I not been so nervous throughout the entire flight! My heart rate was accelerating and I started cursing the F-word repeatedly as we soared higher into the skies. The moment that I have been waiting so anxiously for is about to come!
The MOST terrifying and nerve-wrecking moment of my skydive experience – Standing at the edge of this tiny plane at 18,000 feet above Earth and getting ready for my BIG jump! Looking back, I don’t think I was ever ready!
And … Off we go, plunging into the emptiness below us. I must have been screaming my head off but the pressure from plummeting at well over 190km/hr made me deaf to all sounds! If anything, my ears were so painful from the intense pressure that I felt that my eardrums were going to burst!
60 seconds of an unbelievable freefall, as I watched the clouds and world moved below me. My eardrums felt like they were about to pop anytime, my skin was flapping from the fast wind speed, my hair was blowing in all directions and I was looking like a silly girl with all my hand actions. But the feeling of euphoria, coupled with a crazy rush of adrenaline, was simply like a mind-blowing orgasm. Indescribable.
And I did it! One of the best experiences of my life. :)