Sometimes the things that awaken us deep inside have to wait a very long time. But, still they are there. Such it is for me with hang gliding. I was eighteen years old and had moved to Florida (lasted six weeks). I was living in a neat older trailer with a girl I had met on a previous trip with friends. It had metal straps over it to keep it down in a hurricane. The landlord had made the garage in the back into an apartment. There were old palm trees in the yard and mostly sand instead of grass.
I was talking to the landlord. He was leaving on a trip for Kitty Hawk, North Carolina to go hang gliding. I wanted to go. It seems I had always wanted to hang glide because of how much I wanted to go. I didn’t get to go. I had to go to work at Pizza Hut.
Jump to fifteen years later…hang gliding dream having long ago been pushed to the back row of dreams because of falling in love and following the mom dream…which is an awesome dream but probably could have waited if I had been wiser. Anyway, I had always wanted to be a stay at home mom and now I was and by gum I was gonna do it the way I thought best which meant homeschooling. It actually was great and I have been thanked by the victims. Cory was 7. I used to keep a huge basket full of library books. I always kept a listening ear on what the interests of my crew were and would choose books accordingly and threw in a few of my own. I learned a lot this way. I added a book on hang gliding.
Jump to 2012? By this time, everyone is grown and we are settled in the middle Tennessee area. My son Cory is looking for his life. He decided to pick a new adventure each year. He played bass in a band. He studied Japanese and went to Tokyo for two weeks. He drove every weekend from Nashville to Lookout Mountain hang gliding in Lookout Mountain, Georgia, to study hang gliding.
You begin on the small hill, work to the big hill, train and test, time to jump off of the mountain and wallah! You are a hang glider pilot. I went up on a towed up tandem flight! Wow…wow..wow. The feeling you get when you have a deep desire answered is like when you walk into a cool breeze in the forest after trudging along in the humidity without shade. You feel like yourself again. You feel like more of yourself than you knew before and you feel good because you like who that is. When you soar in the sky and you love it, you take this deep, satisfied breath like finally you are where you should be.
Jump to two years later. Cory quits his computer programming job, travels the country competing in sport class hang gliding competitions. That was 2015. Cory Barnwell, number one in the world for sport class! Follow your heart’s desire. Seek to know it. Now he is following a new dream and it studying to be a commercial pilot. He told me later that he first got the desire to hang glide because of the library book. He said that I took it in to him and said that that was something he could do someday if he wanted to! Wow.
Cory bought a pass for me to learn and I soared off of a little hill. But have once again put the dream on hold because of a knee injury on a scooter…but that’s another story.
Desires are meant to guide us, true and good ones that add to us and the world around us. There is a verse about that. Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD, and He will give you the desires of your heart. NAS. Seems like He is on my side. I didn’t know that then, at eighteen.