Boldly existing outside the box through conscious living and constant learning.
“Do you know the difference between education and experience? Education is when you read the fine print; experience is what you get when you don’t.”
Here we are everyone, two months into the Day Zero Project and it has already been a wild ride. The spirit of this project was to force myself out of my comfort zone and to find adventure and new experiences not only in big things, but in the everyday nuances of the human experience. This month has been no exception to that and has provided a multitude of amazing experiences and opportunity for growth. The biggest thing I have learned from this month of the Day Zero Project is this: from our minds, hearts, and attitudes will spring forth the fruit from which our life gains nourishment and it is up to us to make that fruit ripe and healthy and not rotten.
On to the update! The three items which I completed this month are:
Skydiving August 25th 2012
editors note on the video: I couldn’t extract the audio portion of the DVD they gave me but you get the idea. It is mostly just me saying “I’m excited, which you could have made a drinking game out of, and screaming. For the good stuff skip to 6:30 and watch from there.
Wow! What a rush. Myself, my amazing wife, and four of our friends all decided it was a good idea to jump out of a perfectly good airplane. And good it was. I have struggled to find the words to describe the feeling of hanging your legs out the side of an airplane and staring 13,500 feet down to the ground with nothing between you and the Earth’s surface but rushing wind and the serenity of silence. I still don’t have it but I will try to share with you some of the experience. That instant when I left the security of the plane, rolled, and looked up at the bottom of the airplane I had just leapt from was a surreal and incredible feeling. Seeing it rush away and become a dot in what seemed like seconds made me feel very, very small and I loved it.
As the wind rushed by my face at 120 mph and the press of the wind forced my arms wide and my mouth open I could not help but think, I wouldn’t be that upset if it ended right here. Maybe not the best thought to have when you are plummeting to certain death, but life at that moment could not have gotten any better. After a full minute of chaotic thrashing and mind-blowing speed the life saving pull of the parachute jerked my body upward and my mind back into reality. As we settled into a float soaring a mile above the ground what I noticed first was the silence. It was a sound that can not be found with feet on the ground. In our world of hustle and bustle and the loss of truly secluded places, the air remains with a firm grasp and monopoly over quiet and stillness. I could have stayed there in that place, free from all the things that weight us down mentally and physically, just listening to nothing but my heartbeat and the sound of my own breath. It was truly a singular moment in my life.
Nearing the ground and nearing a re-entry into a world subject to gravity and the whims of our bodies, the magnitude of the experience sank in. I hit the ground, stood up, and just in time turned to see my wife make her landing, and much more gracefully than mine I might add. We hugged, screamed, and shared a moment that even a year ago I never thought was possible. We joined our friends and shared in the same moment with them. We all decided that no matter what happened, no matter where we ended up or moved on to, that we would all, forever, share this experience together. And for that I am grateful.
Take my dog to the dog bakery
Not one of the bolder items, but on the list nonetheless. The one thing I will say about this is that taking our dog, Buddy, to get a treat at the neighborhood doggie bakery seems trivial at first. But when I consider his age (he is 14 which is 98 in dog years) it brings so much joy to my heart to know he is living comfortably and happily during is last time on Earth. Who would have thought when we picked up this scared, panicked young man from the pound 5 years ago that he would be picking out bone-shaped cookies and scarfing them down with speed and ferocity. It gives me and my wife so much joy to see him lounge on our couch, snuggle with his stuffed toys on the bed, and prance around the house with his favorite stuffed animal every time we come home. Just to know that his last memories on Earth will be happy is enough to make me want to be a better person. Just look at that face, come on, how cute is that!
Set an exercise schedule and stick to it
This one is more of an ongoing goal but one that I got started this month and was proud of. Sometimes I think I underestimate the power of being physically active on the mind and the spirit. When we engage in physical action I think it not only nourishes our bodies, but also our soul as well. I love sports of all kinds and participate in them fairly regularly. The goal here was to set some regular days to work out for the sake of becoming more physically fit and able to do some of the other items on the list (climbing Kilimanjaro for example, sheesh). It is my intention to adopt this exercise schedule in addition to the other sports I play and with riding my bike to work each day, which I currently do. This small step I think will allow me to do even more amazing things in the future, now I just have to stick to it.
Weight Training = 3 days per week
Running = 2 days per week
Stretching/Cardio = 2 days per week
Help create a Child Rescue Center in Kenya
I wanted to single this one out not as completed, but as begun and one that is currently rolling along. As you may have read we are in the process of fundraising for the Kisumu Child Rescue and Advocacy Center and are nearing 50% completion of our goal! It is amazing to see the outpouring of support for this project and to know it will become a reality very soon is something that brings me so much joy. To catch up with the current status and to see how you can help visit the website here or click the link on the sidebar to the right. Thank you to all those who have supported so far and to those who will in the future.
In progress items still on track
Read a book a month
Complete at least 80 of my 101 things
Complete 3 Day Zero Project items each month
Eat a food I have never eaten once a month
Keep a list of 1 sentence to describe each day for these 1001 days
Start a non-profit organization
Help create and maintain a medical clinic in Africa
Not miss a day of posting for Unboxed Life
Have 100 followers on Unboxed Life
Compliment a stranger once a week