Have I ever mentioned that I'm not a fan of heights? Or that I generally try to avoid activities that could potentially injure me? I am not a risk taker; a fact that is getting progressively worse as I not only get older, but as I see my kids doing things that could get them hurt. As soon as I had a nasty fall snow skiing I pretty much gave it up. The continual fear of falling and breaking either my neck or my back prevented me from skiing safely. I would love to say that skydiving is my thing, but frankly, when it comes down to me in a plane with a parachute attached to my back, someone would have to physically push me out of the plane. I don't know that my feet would willingly jump. Things brings me to last Friday. We had an offsite retreat for work; you know, the teambuilding kind where we played games that highlighted the importance of getting to know and respect each other, and the value of communication.
After all that fun, the instructor led us the the high ropes course. Yep, ladies and gentlemen, it's exactly as it sounds. We were in the woods at a lodge just outside of Tulsa, with high poles all around us, getting strapped into rock climbing harnesses. I'm not sure what came over me. Maybe it was the fun and exhilaration that I felt when I climbed up the first pole, walked across the beam, climbed up higher to the platform and took the zipline through the trees. That gave me a taste of the excitement. Totally unlike me to enjoy that adrenaline rush. My legs were shaky and my heart was pounding. Rather than sit back and watch my colleagues experience it as well, I realized that I really wanted to climb the tall pole and truly challenge myself. I'm not really sure what came over me other than a sincere desire to just try it. I am a terrible judge of distance, but perhaps the pole was as big around as a dinner plate, maybe smaller, and it was about 40 feet in the air give or take. about 10 feet in front of the top of the pole was a bandana, suspended. The intent is to climb to the top, manuever your way to where you are standing on the pole, and jump - grabbing the bandana on the way down.
My legs shook for a good ten minutes after the jump, but the sense of accomplishment and sheer joy I felt will certainly last for some time. I'm pretty sure there are pictures to show for it - I'll post them eventually once I get copies. In the meantime, I'd just like to say that sometimes I even amaze myself.