It took me a long time to understand that “me taking care of me” was actually watering my soul. I had all kinds of reasons for not taking care of myself. It was selfish, it felt uncomfortable, there wasn’t enough time or money, and it felt better to take care of others instead. I came to realize that by putting myself first, I would be more able to take care of others. I was afraid to step into this new idea of becoming self – Centered for fear of being judged as Self-centered. But one day, I decided to break out of my shell and venture into the world of watering my Spirit. I made a plan. I got in my car, and headed north. I was going to face my fears in a radical way by cracking my own fear-based shell open.
I was afraid of heights, claustrophobic, and suffered from severe motion sickness. What a better way to face those fears and limitations than to go skydiving?
As I drove, the voice in my head desperately tried to convince me to turn around. I had children, for God’s sake! What was I thinking? This was by far, the craziest thing I’d ever thought of! Just as I slowed to turn around, through the radio Celine Dion began to sing, “I believe I can fly. I believe I can touch the sky”. I took that song as divine intervention, not a coincidence but a God-incidence telling me I had to follow through with it. I started crying, knowing deep down that this day would have a much deeper impact on my life than I even knew.
I made it through the class and climbed into the plane. It wasn’t until the skydiving instructor opened the plane door that I went into panic mode. Just as we’d practiced, he directed me to hold onto the plane’s wing brace, step out on the ledge, and he would give me a thumb’s up when I was to let go. There was no possible way I was “STEPPING” out of an airplane! The houses looked like specks! There was only one thing I could do. I prayed. I told God that if He wanted me to do this, He was going to have to do it, because there was NO way I was. In the next moment, I was in the sky like a bird, drifting quietly and calmly to the earth. The landing was incredible. I cried. I didn’t sleep for days because every time I went to close my eyes, I pictured myself looking out of that airplane door and seeing myself stepping out of it. How had I done it?!?!?
My next thought was that anyone can do something once, when they don’t know what they’re getting into. I decided that in order to say I had faced and conquered my fears, I would need to go again. I did go back again, and this time I had it videotaped, with my children, my sister and my husband as witnesses.
A couple months later I was at the shoe store. I saw this pretty pair of white pumps. I tried them on and couldn’t believe how comfortable they were! I laughed and took them off, reminding myself that I was a truck driver and couldn’t wear high heels (Kinda cool side note: I was the first woman to drive a snow plow for the State of Illinois. The lessons I learned there would fill another book!).
As I got in my car, I had a flashback of jumping out of the airplane. Wait, I can skydive, twice, but I can’t wear high heels? I returned to the store and purchased those shoes, and wore them proudly around the house. Little did I know that God was growing me into a position where I would need those shoes.
This excerpt is from my book Seeds of Joy – Growing Zinnias & Your Zest for Life Book. To purchase a copy yourself visit my products page and get a packet of FREE California Giant Zinnia Seeds!