The answer to the question in the title is: Because I want to. I’ve wanted to for decades. When I was younger, I often dreamed I was flying. In my dream, I would jump in the air and just float, at will, over the neighborhood, the city, the countryside. Sometimes when I got into bed at night I would hope for that dream.
But that is flying, not falling, which is presumably what happens when one steps out of an airplane. However, a friend who solo-dives once told me skydivers don’t feel like they’re falling; they feel like they’re flying – Superman-like. That, he said, is why they wear altimeters: they need to be reminded that they are heading to earth and need to pull the cord.
I was going to jump about five years and wanted to use the jump as a fundraiser for Beginnings Care for Life – a remarkable non-profit in our community. I even asked area pastors to join me and raise money for their favorite charities but none thought that “jumping out of a perfectly good airplane” was a smart idea.
Just before paying for my dive, I discovered the outfit that would take me up had a terrible reputation, so I gave up on the idea. A year or two ago, a friend at church. Jeanette Dembski, did a tandem dive for her 80th birthday and I told her that I’d always wanted to do that. Earlier this year, she told me she was going to jump again and asked if I’d be interested in joining her. I said yes without hesitation.
So, here I am again, scheduled to jump on September 15. I still want to use the jump to benefit others – the babies and children in our community, along with their parents. If you’d like to know more about Beginnings Care for Life, check out their website at http://www.beginningscare.com/. If you’d like to assist them in their good work by supporting my jump, go to https://www.gofundme.com/f/jumping-for-beginnings-care. All gifts, minus the 3% fee gofundme charges, go directly to Beginnings Care for Life.
I’ll write a post-jump post and try to put into words what it is like to step out into the air at 14,000 feet. I’m hoping it feels more like flying than falling.