“My first blessing today? I woke up.” ~ Unknown
I wanted to be an astronaut. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t. I was sitting in front of the TV when the first man on the moon touched down. I loved everything about Star Trek – a show way ahead of its time. It took me boldly where no one had gone before. These things inspired and propelled my imagination into space. When we moved to Tucson – I was 10 – we had a pool, and in that pool I could pretend to be weightless, spinning, turning, plunging. That’s when I knew I would never be an astronaut. I was not born with the gift of a good vestibular system. Turn me upside down and I don’t know which way is up. When I was 18 I started scuba diving classes. Not only did it take an extra 30 pounds to sink me (insert floater joke here), even with oxygen I couldn’t discern direction once I was down 12 feet or so. Turn me sideways or flip me over? I became completely lost and out of sorts. It’s called spatial disorientation. I knew in my heart I couldn’t pass the flight physicals long before I found out I also couldn’t dive. Regardless, I’ve never lost my awe of space. A few minutes of nighttime solitude under the stars is better for my body and mind than anything. I prefer to fly at night because I can look at the stars and feel my blood pressure drop if I’m feeling tense about the flight. And the moon? How lucky are we to see such celestial beauty? Our world, our universe, is stunning.