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The Marionette

Skydiving Experience

It didn’t seem real until the moment the door opened and we started moving. That’s when I decided I might have messed up.

Paige Langley, Reporter

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Forever feeling like I’ve lived in the shadows of my twin sister all of my life, it had always been a dream of mine to do something exciting that she hadn’t done before: I was going to go skydiving.

I began looking up all the information about skydiving when I was 16-years-old. Sadly, after reading all the information, I figured out that you have to be 18-years-old to jump. So since my dreams were crushed, I gave up the search until I was of age.

Once I turned 18, I began slowly researching it all again, telling myself that probably in the summer I would jump; however, in the back of my head I believed that I would never get the opportunity to actually achieve the dream. Fast forward a few months and it’s finally spring break — the time that every teen gets the chance to go on cool trips or just simply stay at home and relax because of no school.  All of the plans I originally had fell through so staying at home in bed was the forecast of my week.

I heard my parents mention the talk of skydiving and my attention on everything else quickly escaped my mind and that was all I could think about.

As the week continued on, all that was in my mind was that I was going to be able to fulfill my dream, but it could also be possible that my parachute might not open and, well, yeah.

My mom has friends that have skydived before so they recommended that we go to the Oklahoma Skydiving Center. After doing research, the total cost came to around $200 and then another $100 for pictures and videos of the experience. However, because I finally had the opportunity to do something that I’ve been waiting to do for a long time, I didn’t mind spending the money.

I was scheduled to jump on that Sunday at 2 PM. So we arrived in Cushing, OK around 1:30 that afternoon so we could fill out all of the paperwork that was needed before I could jump. It took a solid long time, initialing little paragraphs agreeing that if I were to die that my family wouldn’t sue the company and that I was risking my life and so on.

At this point, I began to sort of panic on the inside because reading three pages of a contract saying that I could potentially die from doing this activity was something that I truly wanted to hear before I jumped out of a plane.

After signing my life away, I was taken and taught the techniques of the plane that we were jumping out of and how to properly jump. After that, I was taken in a room with Grizzle, the instructor I was jumping with. He put me into the harness and tightened all the straps and then put himself in his harness as well. After we were all strapped in, we walked to the plane.

For having never been in a plane before, I would say that the first experience was basically what I expected and to be quite honest it didn’t even feel like we were moving. My eyes stayed glued out of the window the whole time and considering we were in the air going up 10,000 feet, it seemed like I was looking out for a long while.

If I can remember right, the ride up was around 20 minutes. Grizzle had a band on his wrist which showed the altitude which we watched slowly rise to 10 and once it hit that it was time to jump.

This, I would have to admit, was the scariest part and was when it all began to feel real. The door to the plane opened and Grizzle started to make his way to the edge (of course being attached to him when he started moving meant I was moving, too). I don’t know if you’ve ever imagined looking down from 10,000 feet up, but it is one crazy experience and seeing the flat land of Oklahoma turned out to be quite peaceful. Having the wind brutally attack you isn’t the best feeling in the world, but once the parachute was pulled the free feeling of gliding in the air was worth the attack. We free fell for six minutes or so and then roughly landed in a grass field.

My only complaints of the whole experience would be that it was super windy so the landing was not as smooth as it could have been, and also the fact that I turned out looking like a turtle in all of the pictures I got.

But overall, I would say the experience was amazing and it would most definitely be something that I would love to do again and recommend to all of those interested.

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The student news site of Harding Charter Preparatory High School
Skydiving Experience