Free Fallin’


I had the incredible opportunity to go skydiving again yesterday, and it was, once again, awesome. After my first experience, I received the very generous and much appreciated gift of a second Groupon, and so I wanted to go again as soon as possible.

I had two goals the second time around: I wanted, now that I knew the logistics of how it worked, to go again while all of that was still fresh in my mind to be able to focus more on the actual experience, and I wanted pictures under the parachute.

I had a photographer the first time during the dive, but since he was jumping with us he only got pictures of the free fall portion and the landing; none of the parachute portion of the descent. This time, my dad was kind enough to come with me and get pictures from the ground, and, as you’ll see, did an incredible job.

The picture at the top isn’t me, by the way, I went on Saturday and took some pictures of my friends the Thomsons and some other people just so that I could talk my dad through the best places to stand, etc., for my jump yesterday. The picture above is my favorite of the ones I took that day.

The ones below are what my dad took, starting with one right after we came out of the plane with the drogue chute deployed, and going through landing.

It was a somewhat different experience this time; at least as awesome but in a different way. I jumped with the same trainer, so I knew how he did things, but he also changed things up a bit since it was my second jump.

One goal we both had in common this time was that he also wanted me to relax more and focus on the experience. On the “downside,” it meant that my second jump didn’t have quite the same adrenaline rush that the first one did. I remember shaking a little while standing right after landing the first time; that wasn’t the case this time.

After we jumped this time Jamie turned us over so that we watched the airplane for a little bit before turning face-down again. At times I would close my eyes and just focus on feeling it, looking for an awareness of g-forces, but really the wind is all you’re aware of. Not as peaceful as other free-fall experiences I’ve had, but awesome in its own right.

Another diver stayed near us for a while, but then fell another half-mile after we opened our chute before deploying his. It was freaky watching from above as he plummeted to the ground; it gave me a perspective of the speeds involved that I didn’t have before.

The instructor did a bit more while we were under canopy this time, including some corkscrew turns, which were a lot of fun.

I’m hugely blessed that I got to go again and grateful for the opportunity, thankful to my dad for the pictures, the Thomsons for sharing their passion with me, Skydive Alabama for an incredibly professional operation and Jamie for being an awesome instructor

In case I haven’t mentioned it lately, it’s an incredible experience, and I highly recommend it.

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