“You have within you right now, everything you need to deal with whatever the world can throw at you.”

In five days, I’ll be skydiving to raise money for the American Heart Association.

For the last month, Mother Nature has not been kind to me on my days off of work. It has been either too windy or too cloudy for altitude. This Skydiving Chick is going through intense skydiving withdrawal, although luckily I got to experience a little bit of altitude this weekend…

Clinton, MO at 3,000 feet

I got my altitude fix for about twenty minutes  yesterday when I hopped aboard the citabria for a quick flight around Clinton, MO. This was my very first ride in a small airplane for pleasure – without the intention of jumping out. It was exhilarating. There was something unsettling about being in a small airplane without a rig strapped to my back. I didn’t even have an altimeter on. I had no clue how high we were flying, all I knew was that when he decided to do a fly by, we dove low enough that I looked down thinking, ‘I’d be turning on base right now’… and then I screamed, and I almost peed my pants (but in my defense, I had to pee before takeoff.

Riding in that airplane was a heck of a lot of fun, and it provided a nice distraction from my thoughts – which have been consumed lately by the coming weekend and how I am going to pull off these skydives.

Five jumps in succession may seem like nothing to any regular seasoned jumper, but I’ve never done five skydives in a row. Due to my high heart rate, I am usually exhausted after two or three jumps in one day. I’ve never landed my Sabre multiple times in a row on my feet. So I began to fret…What if I smash myself in on the first jump? I haven’t jumped in a month, I’m rusty – what if I plow myself in and I still have four more jumps to do? What if I get hypoxic again? What if… and then after about 15 excruciating minutes of imagining out loud every negative scenario, a person pointed out to me that I’m only” what-if-ing” about possible negatives. In addition, I was pointlessly worrying about and planning for situations which had not even occurred yet. He said to me “All that matters is today.” And he’s right.

What if I land on my face? Or twist an ankle? What if I nail every single jump and have the time of my life? None of it matters RIGHT NOW.

No matter how much you plan, or fret, or get excited about the future, you can only exist in the present and take control of your life as it unfolds right in front of you, right now. Worrying about my performance on my jumps five days from now isn’t going to make my skydiving skills any better.  Just like worrying over the past won’t make your future any brighter, worrying about the future will only cause a distraction from the present.

Thinking positively today, taking care of myself and those I love – that will make for a better day today.

And that is what matters right here, right now.

Blue Skies!