So my friend Manon is a great writer. Her boyfriend Luc is a skydiver and he introduced her to the sport a short while ago.
This is her story:
Homage to my man
Written by: Manon Corbeil
Translated by: Adam A
Well, well! Those of you who know me know quite well that sometimes I need to write to clear my mind…
My new friends however, don’t know this about me… Tonight, It’s to them that I dedicate this as I feel like I’m about to explode and it just has to come out!!
And who’s responsible this time?
Yep… Again him… I already owe him so much from the last three years…
How did it start you ask?
The birds… That passion developed itself very early during my adolescence when I lived in the beautiful town of Dorval. A classmate pointed out that in Dorval we could easily identify over 200 different species of birds… I figured he was lying until one day I actually started paying attention to those same birds! To their singing, their silhouettes, the way they fly… Their actions.. With time I managed to recognize and even identify them with ease and also, as incredible as it may seem. I managed to feel exactly what those birds feel during flight!
I hear you all saying: “She’s fucked in the head!” Uhhh yeah, I admit it, I must be and I won’t hide it. I do however remain convinced that I was a bird in another life – Most probably an eagle – I’m very happy to believe this.
I was always comfortable with the idea that I was a bird in my past life and I never had any difficulty accepting the fact that my present life was to be that of a human and that flight was impossible…Therefore, the desire to find myself as free as the wind between the earth and the sky was always quite present deep down inside of me and I must admit that I was extremely pulled towards hang gliding at a certain point in my life.
Circumstances and obligations of day to day life often have the unwanted effect of pushing our dreams aside, until one day we finally convince ourselves that these dreams are to remain dreams and that desire ends up becoming nothing but fantasy… An unfulfilled fantasy. With the years that pass we finally tell ourselves that these dreams or fantasies are simply “not for us” and we find all the good reasons to finally reject the idea and simply scrapping all those dreams that never became a reality…
It’s crazy how our perspectives can change from that moment when we decide that things are “accessible”!In my case, I only needed one person to convince me so!! That everything is possible!!! That as long as the desire is there, anything is possible!!!
This same person convinced me, more often than I’ve had to convince him and for multiple reasons, that we can. That if we simply want it enough, we can accomplish all of our desires!!
How can I even begin to show how much I appreciate this person? I pump all the love that I am able to find inside of my heart out and give it entirely to this person, because he is mine and I love him deeply with a love in it’s realest and purest form.
Where was I? Oh yeah… Flying… Like a bird…
My man… He’s a skydiver. He’s been one for a long time, and for reasons that differ from my own but have just as deep an effect, he found himself obligated at a certain point in his life to put this passion of his aside…
It was only in August 2010 that he had the initiative to give me a thank you gift – for helping him with some difficult renovations – that gift was the gift of a tandem skydive at Voltige.
A dream, that dream, the one that I had pushed away deep down inside me and closed beneath a bunch of different experiences finally came back to surface! I was given the chance to FLY!!! Me? I couldn’t believe it!
But… That day… I felt… I savored… I flew.. The sky!!! It was…. magical! Extraordinary!! A sensation that I can’t even begin to describe… You have to live it to understand it!
But then the days passed… Then the months… Winter arrived… I finally came back to earth..
Come spring 2011, he’s in need. His vital urge to “jump”… I can’t comprehend it…
I decided to accompany him during one of his days at the drop zone… And then… That was it! A mechanism went off inside of me… I want to “understand” I want to “live it”!
But, I remained silent for weeks because deep down inside of me “it’s just not for me”… Then one day, it just turned off… And I repeated to myself:It’s crazy how our perspectives can change from that moment when we decide that things are “accessible”!
I want to become a skydiver! It’s finally clear! I’m 43 years old and I don’t care!
August 18th: I started my wind tunnel training with Philippe.August 20th: I was doing my theory school with the marvelous Gina. I had the intention of doing my first jumps the same day… Unfortunately, it was too windy and I had to wait until August 27th for that to happen.
4 jumps in the same day! All accompanied by my mentor Gina!
Those 4 jumps were incredibly meaningful to me… I accomplished a dream… I felt like I had achieved a step towards being myself, way farther then I had ever thought. Never would I have believed that I could do 4 jumps in the same day! I succeeded at them all on top of that!
Gina knew how to take care of me regardless of how fearful she knew I was. She knew how to convince me that I could do it, she knew just the right words to say.. I owe her enormously! Surely I was a huge challenge for her! Bravo and thank you Gina!
Then came Richard’s turn to accompany me in the sky for a jump. It was cloudy, but we decided to go anyway. It was a beautiful jump… Beautiful until the moment I was to open my parachute…. A little moment of panic in my eyes, I couldn’t find the pilot chute handle…. Richard saw it in my eyes and quickly came to my rescue. Thankfully, I managed to find the handle… Phew!
Next came my first solo jump… I absolutely needed to do it the same day as my last accompanied jump because the last one didn’t go too well (stupid pilot chute!) I couldn’t permit myself to make things worse.. Once again, this jump was into the clouds… And regardless of all that happened, I had the joy of experiencing this all alone for the first time in the magnificent sky above Joliette..
A week past between this jump and the next…. Just enough time for that famous fear to ingrain itself inside me again. In my opinion, it will always be present and I will now have to learn to “deal with it”. This time, it was Annie who “kicked my butt” because truthfully, as soon as I got to the drop zone, I didn’t want to jump at all. Just like Gina did, she knew exactly the right words to convince me to jump!
All these solo jumps… What more can I say but: WOW! Pure happiness!
This super long text to finally thank a bunch of great people…
Everyone at Voltige truly is perfect!
Thank you Richard for my Tandem… Thank you Philippe for the wind tunnel… Thank you Gina for… For everything! (You know what I mean) Thank you Mario, Olivier and Daniel for the radio assistance (And the hugs)… Thank you Annie for the kick in the butt and for your inspiration (Your pictures and videos) thank you Dino for being my cameraman during my exam… Thank you Manifest girls for your patience (My millions of calls and all)
Thank you everyone at Voltige! You are amazing! Thank you to all my new skydiver friends!!!
But most of all… Thank you Luc, my man… All this is thanks to you! I love you!