I’ve always wanted to skydive, never thought I’d actually be doing it one day! Helped me get over my fear of heights, so that’s good!
It was my goal to go for my 26th birthday, but unfortunately that didn’t manifest to my expectation. It was not until my dear friend took her brother for his birthday and I decided to pluck up the courage, go with the birthday group and JUST DO IT! You gotta listen when the universe calls, right?
For those that are interested in ticking skydiving off your ‘eff-it’ list, I have gathered highlights to show the process, below. You can also watch the video! No laughing 😉
AT first, I was very nervous, my stomach was sitting in my throat. Once you are all strapped up and buckled into your harness, the wait to get into the plane feels surreal.
Once I saw my friend’s mother (who is petrified of heights!) take the jump, I felt at ease, knowing that it’s all in your mind and how you make it out to be. The mind is so powerful! She was such a trooper and it was highly encouraging to watch!
The plane ride is about a 15 minute ride (I think?), to gain height of about 10 000 feet (-+ 3 km). I had absolutely no concept of time, it didn’t exist up there but I can tell you that the view is out of this world!
I did a tandem jump with a professional skydiver, of course. If you would like to jump alone, one would need to go for a training course. There is a lot involved in the process of gearing up, safety, weight (limit is 105 kgs) etc. I take my hat off to these men who jump all day like it’s nothing!
Sitting on top of a stranger, strapped to him and hanging from the edge of a plane is the least of your worries, while praying that you don’t die when you exit the plane at 200 km/h, realising that you forgot to tell your parents this morning that you love them and you’re sorry for all the drama you’ve put them through over the years!
This is me slightly praying, can you tell?
OK, so you are free-falling at 200 km/h, your skin feels like it’s been sucked by a vacuum cleaner and you are to scared to even scream! Luckily your eyeballs will stay in their sockets, as you have to wear goggles. I can’t even begin to explain the feeling!
After about 2-3 minutes of free-falling (which feels a lot longer), the parachute is opened and at this stage my ears are popping and my leg strap is pinching my skin as I move from a lying down position to sitting. Although this was a tad uncomfortable, it was absolutely nothing compared to the feeling you feel when you are aware of your view and surroundings (or lack thereof) and realise that pain can be overcomed by the mind too, if you are strong enough to focus on the good.
I remember the instructor guiding me on each and every step and telling me what to do next, but I had no idea what he was saying. Like English just left my vocab and I only heard sounds. Your adrenaline at this stage is pumping through your eyeballs, it’s so intense, so it ‘blocks’ out any information trying to get into your brain! Once the instructor told me to breath and let go of the poor harness, I was calm…the calmest I have ever been.
…I have never experienced a sense of peace and freedom like that, on the ground. The silence in that moment is deafening but I didn’t want it to end. The view of Cape Town from up there does not give the photo’s any justice! You have to see it for yourself!
As we are gliding and doing ‘tricks’ in the air, I’ve decided to learn to respect pilots and birds a whole lot more, for their never-ending fear of heights! 😉
As we are landing, I am slightly sad as I know this moment is coming to an end. I’m now sitting in the sand, with no energy left from all the adrenaline and a ‘drunk’ feeling, wondering if all this was a dream.
I still cannot get over the view, the colours, the weather being perfect! It was a few moments of my life that felt the longest, time did not exist and I did not want the feeling to end…that’s when you know you are ALIVE, not just existing. Keep these moments that you might have, close to heart, for they are the true meaning of ‘being’!
A MASSIVE thank you to my instructor and the team of Skydive Cape Town for their amazing professionalism, making the experience easier, unforgettable and as comfortable as possible and for recording and taking photos of the whole experience!
Check out the video here…
I’d love to hear your opinion in the poll below and if you have any questions or want to share your own experience, please comment below.
If riding in a plane is flying, then riding in a boat is swimming. If you want to experience the element, then get out of the vehicle. – Anonymous