“What brought you here?”
That’s a very good question.
When I started writing this blog, it was primarily about a physical journey. An average, middle of the pack runner with nothing too special in the way of athletic ability – but with a dream of excellence and the desire to evolve to a much higher level.
Now, it seems, this blog has become much more of mental journey for me – the chronicling of a psychological revolution.
Much of my life has revolved around measuring up – to the expectations of my parents, the rigid rules of a religion which never really resonated with me, as well as, the personal and professional standards I’ve set for myself throughout my years upon this Earth.
I’ve spent years trying to find my place – figuring out where I belong, doing what, and with whom.
Now, it seems more about breaking free – from all of the people, places, things, thoughts and feelings which were never really meant for me and no longer hold space in my heart.
It’s crazy how, in just a few short years, something so simple can become so complex. What once seemed so important now pales in comparison to what’s most important to me now. Yet, what’s most important is the simplest thing of all.
As I sat on that picnic table today, staring up at the sky, and the skydiver sitting next to me asked, “What brought you here?”, my entire life flashed through my mind and lingered upon my three tandem jumps before taking on the AFF course.
#1.) May 2015, strapped to the same man who had assumed the responsibility of my instruction today, in order to simply face my fear.
#2.) October 2019, on the anniversary of my parents deaths, surrounded and accompanied by friends who have now assumed the role of my family.
#3.) October 2020, following the anniversary of my parents deaths and in the aftermath of their trial, as I was drowning in grief, guilt, and regret. It was on this day, as I was seeking to find out what it might feel like to die, that I was handed the reins (or, in this instance, the toggles!) and shown what it feels like to truly LIVE!
I’ve discovered that many students and skydivers have some similar experience (sometimes many!) and those who’ve been jumping a long time have a way of looking at things differently – with humor and grace, and a deeper respect for this gift which we have been given.
So, as a million thoughts and moments, failures and fears flashed throughout my mind, and my first instinct was to deflect and avoid, I stopped for a moment before deciding to simply speak my truth.
“A deathwish.”, I replied as our eyes locked on…and we both smiled.
When I came here, I came because I was broken; but now I am beyond all that. I am finally free.
Sometimes it takes facing death to make you realize how much you really want to LIVE!
Those who jump, KNOW. 🪂
*It’s not always about running; sometimes, it’s simply about LIFE.