Long story, and I am not at all sure this is the right forum for it. The community is amazing and I'm GOING to keep trying until I get this right.
I have had a hard time getting started in this sport. I made my first AFF jump in 2000, and it was a year before I could afford to jump again. In 2001 I did another AFF jump, which went fine. I paid for my next jump, but the Pilatus Porter crashed while I was gearing up. Good people got hurt. Not a great day.
I did a tandem in early 2016 and a lot of tunnel flight. It took me a lot of time to get back to AFF, but I made one jump. On my next try, I had to land with the aircraft because I just could not calm down enough to exit. The season ended and I came back in 2017.
I had a good training tandem and progressed, after several weather days, to AFF. I had a great freefall experience, but I was lost when my canopy opened. I could not find the airport.
It's embarrassing from here out. I did not make it back. I made a lot of mistakes and I got lucky enough to only break my fibula and some ligaments. Got some screws and a bit of steel in my leg. I don't run anymore.
I'm living on a small island in the middle of the Atlantic now, so I only get a couple of opportunities to try to skydive each year. I tried to make an AFF jump at a place in CA this May, but I froze in the airplane again. It's a long ride down, no matter how fast the pilot goes.
I'm going to be back in the US in January 2019, and I have a place to jump in mind. Florida, this time. I don't want to be a big bother to them before I even show up, so do any of you have pointers for clothing to wear for winter jumps? Tips for getting past nerves? Anything I should know?