I suddenly remembered today, the time I sky dived from thirteen thousand feet. We were just married, Him and I. It was the time when in the first flush of newly wedded bliss, one tends to agree to almost anything. Just for the happiness of hanging out together. And of course, not having to refuse. Atleast, I couldn't refuse. Not when Him asked with that innocent, excited sweetness that still remains his trademark; which is why none of us is afraid even when he roars from his 6'3 height. He's as liable to burst out laughing the next second at his own actions.
So we went. The girl at the reception desk asked us if we wanted to stick with the pre booked nine thousand feet or go for thirteen thousand feet. Him looked at me, eyes shining. He had done it before and was excited for me. I figured that jumping from a plane deserved grandeur. I would not fall from nine thousand feet if I could choose four thousand feet more. I was jumping. I might as well put the exclamation mark on it.
My tandem jump instructor was unforgettable. He was an Australian man in a cow suit. As he helped harness me, I remember him saying, "Your legs are bloody crooked!" While Him chuckled, I said, "That's just my legs. You don't know my mind yet."
The cold air hit my teeth as we dropped from the plane. The ground didn't appear to rush at me from up there. We seemed to float. The instructor had me on a parachute ride going this way and that once we got to seven thousand feet. The Cow-Suit showed me Him. I could see Him's blue and green parachute circling lazily, his long legs dangling. I imagined his expression. The one he wore in our wedding pictures was the same one he wore on a six flags roller coaster ride during a descent. It was a grin/grit. His lovely teeth bared. His charming smile/grimace only making him look better. I could never manage it. Even with war paint on.
The green fields in Davis appeared checkered, shades of green. The air that had rushed up initially was freezing. It got warmer later. The world appeared awfully clean and small. Like the rest of earth was a well constructed lego set. It was hard to remember what exactly seemed so important before.
You're removed from the Matrix Neo
I remember thinking after I landed that there was only one other reason I agreed to do it, besides not wanting to say no to Charming Him.
There was just one of two outcomes. I would live, or not. That sort of certainty I have no problem with. It required no added bravery. The basic instinct for self-preservation asserted itself when I hesitated just a moment over the edge of the exit. Then I remembered that the little plane was filled with men. Who might think that it was "just like a girl" to back out after all that! So vanity and $250 per person got me moving too.
Then, in much the way most of us face important aspects of our lives, at the urging of Cow-Suit, I fell headlong into the open space.
It didn't change me fundamentally or anything like that. Just made me aware of what drives my choices.
When Mini-Him is off on his own, I want to do this!