“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever. That surrender, even the smallest act of giving up, stays with me. So when I feel like quitting, I ask myself, which would I rather live with?”
Back in January, I mentioned that we were starting up our own air sports training center. Turns out it’s a lot of work opening a drop zone, hence why I’ve been MIA on the blog circuit! I’ve been spending the majority of my writing time doing monthly articles for Blue Skies Magazine 🙂 But now that I have a minute, I figured I’d throw out an update on what is going on in our world over here 🙂
When I first started this blog, it focused on skydiving and successfully knocking things off of my bucket list (albeit quite clumsily), despite heart disease being a daily pain in my ass. I never would have thought that today I would open a drop zone.
In the last year we went through about 4 props for the motor , an insane amount of training, many late nights with very little sleep, all of our money, a couple of personal injuries, quite a few tears, and a little bit of foot stomping to get this drop zone up and running.
Now for someone with a heart condition, choosing air sports as a career is not a walk in the park. Quite honestly, it’s exhausting. But every day that I deploy my parachute in free fall, or my feet leave the ground for another paragliding flight, I am reminded that I did not just shake off all of the odds and the doubt stacked against me – I took those suckers and drop kicked them twice the length of a football field. Not only do I continue to skydive with my condition – but I paraglide, powered paraglide, hang glide, and many other things with it too! So that being said, if I can do all of these things with my heart not functioning properly, I can absolutely do them even after I bounce myself into the ground repeatedly.
Any person involved in even one of these sports knows that it is really hard on your body. In just the last year and a half, I have messed up my shoulder, my foot, my back, my knee, my elbow and lord only knows what else. I think it just sort of happens when you combine a career in multiple air sports with a very clumsy personality.
I’ve gone to urgent care with my left arm wrapped in a t-shirt turned into a sling after bouncing in the desert (keep in mind, my right arm is already f***ed).
I left urgent care with a real sling… …..and then took it off to fly for 45 minutes in a wind tunnel about three hours later.
I spent 6 hours screaming and hollering in the ER with some nasty bruising and road rash on my knee after a lakeside faceplant. (It wasn’t broken, just smashed to all hell)
I left with crutches, a leg brace, and gauze… and my knee continued to bleed for six more days.…And I was back in the air having photos taken in free fall for the website, despite the pain, less than three weeks later.
I’ve popped more Motrin than I’ve ever taken in my life just in my last year learning to paraglide.. With hours.. upon hours.. upon HOURS of kiting. All with a torn rotator cuff and a bad SLAP tear (Right shoulder).
And I have never been as sore after any workout than I was after my most recent flight in the wind tunnel with my bad shoulder.
But every bounce, every ounce of pain has been totally worth it. We are now DZOs!
And I haven’t given up a single one of these sports yet (in fact I’ll be adding even more to the list come next spring). Sure, it can be scary to get back up and try again after failing miserably – especially when it involves a whole lot of pain – but I find that my greatest flights sometimes happen right after my worst ones.
Sometimes when we fall, we learn what we need to do right the next time in order to land on our feet. And pushing through fear always makes you stronger!!
“If you fell down yesterday, stand up today.”
― H.G Wells