My biggest fear once was the fear of drowning? or was it learning to swim unaided…
eh, no matter—now I only fear neglecting to live.
Swimming was always in the hand I was dealt, but never really a part of my game plan. I spent many summers of my youth at the beach. Oftentimes my family would hop in the car early on a random Saturday morning and make the two’ish hour journey East to Powhatan Country, namely Virginia Beach. We’d spend a day at play and then head home fully rejuvenated and fulfillingly exhausted. And although I felt at home in the ocean, in water, I was always fearful of drowning. Growing up, I could not swim. No one in my immediate family of five had yet to learn. Consequently, I was in constant conflict with self: do I love or fear the water. Every time I submerged for a moment I emerged gasping for air.
I remember getting stuck in the deep end of the wave pool at Carowinds one year. My little sister was in a floaty, and I, being determined and possibly a wee bit too prideful plus bullishly stubborn, refused to say to the lifeguard directly above us I needed assistance getting us back to the shallow end. So we waded and floated until the waves ceased, and then I managed to push and kick us back to shallow water—in what I’m sure was a mighty comical display of childish will and brute determination for the average bystander.
After that experience, I wanted so bad to learn to swim. I had to. And the odds would have it, I was the only person truly capable of learning to swim for myself. So from then on, every chance I had I practiced. I challenged myself to go underneath the water. I challenged myself to not be afraid of water getting in my ears, my nose, eyes or mouth. I challenged myself to hold my breath and thrive as long as possible, and although my unshakable fear of water did not cease right away— slowly, yet surely it began to weaken its stronghold. . .
Peace and always Love,