I give myself time-lines in life, and I have to say, God has been faithful. He really has.
As I stepped towards the end of my fourth decade in life, I resolved to do one of the many things on my timeline.
I know! I do certain things that God knows I do not understand why myself. Can’t explain why, can’t even give a sensible reason! BUT! No regrets on this last DO, and none so far to the glory of God.
As my birthday approached this year, my family and I started brainstorming on how to celebrate, we decided on the Gulf of Mexico as the destination of choice. Assigned my son as the Project Manager for the vacation, and told him what I wanted to do. He was excited and supportive. He asked: “Why do you want to do it mama?” I told him I have always wanted to do it. He smiled and planning began 🙂
I wanted a private birthday – my style – with some of the real and sincere people in my life with me. Of course my mum was going, my son definitely was going, and then, my wonderful aunty, who never has a dull moment, but is sooo real as real itself, “Madam Sote” as lovingly tagged by her students of Command Secondary School, Ibadan, had to go. I called aunty up and asked what her plans were, and asked if she would honor me on my special day – NOT disclosing WHAT exactly I was going to do! Aunty obliged. Little did she know what was up until two days before! Aunty screamed, and I burst out laughing 🙂
Fast forward to the real deal…………… I met Frank of South Padre Island Skydiving, he gave me the paperwork, and as I was filling it, something said: “Do not read the fine prints!” OMG! I do not want to read it, but there was a signature line that I had no choice in reading: “EMERGENCY CONTACT IN THE EVENT OF INJURY OR DEATH!!!” Hmmm! For real? I wrote my cousin’s name and crossed it out! Wrote my brother’s name and crossed it out! I needed someone here with me I thought. Nothing would happen by God’s grace, but I had to write someone’s name! Hmmmmm!!! Whose name would I put? My mum? My aunty? I decided on my aunty! She is a tough cookie I know, but they won’t have the cause to call her in Jesus mighty name, Amen. This aspect of the deal is NOT fun, but again, what I was about to do is and was! Focus, Valentina, I said to myself!
I handed my payment method to Frank, he swiped it, and I reminded him to add the payment for my digital package to it. I sure wanted my memories later.
Got introduced to Luke who would be my skydiving pro, and into the van we went, en route to the airport!
I saw the little bitty aircraft that even when I was a flight attendant, I never dreamt of getting into. Got strapped up, and received the little training and into the aircraft we went.
I remained calm, and at 9,500ft, the pilot made some hand-signals to Luke, and Luke told me to get ready for the jump – he was going to push me out of the aircraft at 11,500ft above the ground! Luke asked one more time if I was still willing to, and of course, I was! I am already up in the sky, and I would still need to get out of that little bitty aircraft one way or another, and my credit card had already been charged, so I might as well jump! I looked out the window one more time, and a brighter future ahead of me I saw 🙂
The door opened, and the cold breeze welcomed me, and my left leg out first as trained, followed by my right leg, and jump I did! It was liberating I must say!
As we made the free fall, I felt the world become small, I was excited, but at the same time I knew if Luke decided NOT to pull the parachute for any reason, or the parachute decided not to cooperate, I would not be able to tell the story, so, smiling to God, I said a prayer – I had to!
It was cool, it was thrilling. 🙂 My best part was piloting the parachute after it was deployed. I was excited. I loved every part of it, and I had the best skydiving partner – Luke.
We dived over the waters and explored the Island before landing safely on the beach. Full Video Below.
I enjoyed every bit of my day, I had the BEST birthday ever, and YES! I will do it again, but next time, I will do it with my good friends – Betty and Jibike! So ladies, get your bags ready. We are going skydiving! 🙂
To my beautiful niece – Morenike who wants to go as well, aunty is ready for you darling 🙂
Click on the Play Button to view the video.