With the loss of several amazing athletes, friends and deep soul connections over the months I have been so tempted to throw in the towel. Not on BASE jumping but on making these connections, becoming deeply attached to those I love in the sport and just distancing myself from those who participate in it. I wanted to just run away from the pain and promise myself that I will protect me from the potential of continuing devastation by not becoming connected to jumpers any more. But then I realized how selfish that truly is and how terrible life would be if I actually did this.
It led me to ask. Do we allow the recent events and the fear of total devastation dissuade us and prevent us from making these once in a life time connections and friendships? Do we, for self preservation, close ourselves off to those who can have a profoundly good yet potentially horrific impact on our lives? Do we become self centered enough and say that we are doing so for self preservation reasons, so we can continue our lives as whole as possible? After thinking about this for many days I have come to the conclusion that we can not allow the possibility of complete and total devastation prevent us from making these amazing and loving connections. There is nothing more heart breaking then knowing a bright light exists and becoming attached at such a deep level and then losing them, except for the possibility of never experiencing the love, joy and laughter with these people in the first place.
The recent loss our community has suffered should do many things for us as a whole. It should remind us that no one is exempt and it can happen to anyone. To re-evaluate our decision making process and promise ourselves that we will never jump saying “it will all be ok”. That we will all take even more time to evaluate what the conditions are and be as safe as possible. And at the same time it should motivate us and force us to always ALWAYS love fully, tell those whom you love how much you love them all the time. Never leave questions un-answered and make sure that every day, you live knowing that if it was over tomorrow you have no regret.
We all participate in this sport fully knowing the consequences and potential outcome. Some of our friends and family know and accept this and some of them don’t. It is our job as compassionate, considerate human beings to express our deepest love and gratitude to those who fear for us and do our best to explain why we are willing to pay the ultimate price for what we do. Even if we don’t believe it will happen to us, We need to know that it can.
No one makes it out alive my friends but we can all do our best to insure that our exit time comes as late in life as possible.** This post was written several months ago during a time when several friends were lost to the sport. I couldn’t bring myself to post this until now.