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Last year I created a bucket list that I planned to complete within the next year – before I turn the big 3 0. Skydiving has been a dream of mine since I was a kid. I wanted to go on my birthday a few times, but I always said I would do it before I turned 30!

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My sweet husband has been on this crazy journey with me the whole time. I love that he stays right by my side, supporting me even when I book skydiving, whitewater rafting, and zip lining all in the same week!

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I feel like skydiving (mostly the fear of dying) has brought us closer together. We talked about death and it made us realize how important a will is. We also learned that life insurance doesn’t pay out in a skydiving accident.

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One of the skydiving instructors at Skydive Monroe was killed in a freak skydiving accident the day before we jumped. His parachute was working properly, but he misjudged the landing and hit the ground too fast. He was airlifted to Grady Memorial Hospital but died from his injuries. Friends and family have set up a GoFundMe account for Bennett’s family.

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I later found out that I was close to dangerous situation. I was the last one out of the plane. There were 4 sets of us; 9 people total jumped out of the plane. Inside the plane there is a green light that comes on when the pilot is at the right attitude and it is safe to jump. Right as we were tumbling out of the plane, the pilot turned on the red “do not jump” light because we had gone too far and he was going to circle back around to the jump zone.

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My experienced skydive instructor realized we had missed our jump zone and let us fall far enough away from the plane, but pulled the parachute earlier than usual so we had more time to float back into the landing area. The plane was still very close and almost came into our crosswinds. I could see the plane right out in front of us as we were free falling.

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Luckily my guy adjusted accordingly and I had no idea what was happening at the time. I was only thinking, “Wow that plane is really close” and “I hope the parachute opens!” I wasn’t thinking about the plane hitting us!

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My entire experience was caught on video. If you’re planning to go skydiving, definitely get the video. The look on my face when they open the door cracks me up every time. I screamed the entire time we were free falling and when we did the spins. When you pull one side of the parachute you can change directions.

Skydiving video from today! My face on the plane cracks me up! ???? He turns us to go inside a cloud at 4:40. Everything around us turned completely white! ??? #bucketlist #30BeforeIm30 #30Before30 #skydiving #video #ididit #pressplay

Posted by Amy Dingler on Sunday, June 11, 2017

If you pull one side and hold it, you spin in a circle. I got to “drive” and spins us some. My instructor spins us into a cloud at 4:40 in the video. The cloud was amazing! When we went inside everything turned completely white. There was no up or down, it’s all just white emptiness.

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The first set of people to jump out of the plane took the longest. There were three of them jumping simultaneously, and one of the guys was jumping solo for the first time. The first guy out stepped on the wing of the plane OUTSIDE and held on there while the other two guys got ready. On the count of three they all dove together. Then our new friend, Autumn, who was jumping for the first time went. Then my husband. And then me.

I originally said this was a one time thing, but would I do it again? YES, I would! It was an amazing experience that I will never forget!

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“For every day that you’re on this earth, for every minute that you have, the whole idea is doing nothing less than exactly what you feel you’re supposed to do and squeezing every last drop out of life every day, regardless of the difficulties or trials that you face.”  -Ryan Tedder

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