Did you ever hear the saying ‘if you always do the same old, same old – you will always get the same old, same old?’ So OK that was me – never really trying anything new and adventuresome in the past few years. Same old thing week-in and week-out!! Always had an excuse – I can’t do that because it costs too much, or I don’t have the time, or it will take up to much time, or my bones are too old or why do something once that I will never do again or I won’t be good at it or it’s not the right time? BLAH-BLAH-BLAH! When is the right time?
I think I was always fascinated with scuba diving – when someone else was doing it – until I saw my friend Gregg’s pictures from Malaysia. And then I was blown away and knew I had to dig deep, find the courage, find the money, find the time, find the right instructor and jump off the ledge (or the boat or the shore) and just do it!
So that is what I did – I joined a scuba diving certification class, took that plunge and am now ‘certified.’ What a great feeling to know you can do something out of the norm and be successful at it. How do I judge success on this one – well I made it home alive and a giant catfish didn’t swallow me up.
Now for those that don’t scuba you are probably asking what it was like? Day one in the pool was great – of course we were only in water 4 feet deep – you can’t get too nervous about that. Day two in the pool was, well … let’s say I had some ‘issues.’ When Leslie said ‘OK – now we are going to the deep end of the pool’, my reply was ‘you guys may go – I am staying right here.’ I eventually did go to the deep end as I felt really stupid hanging in the shallow end with all my gear surrounded by little kids!
Ok not bad but the big challenge was only a few weeks away – open water certification – in a big old lake. You do realize that lakes don’t really have sides like a pool does to hold onto – right? And the lake isn’t going to be anywhere near as clear as a pool – right? And you do realize you are going to be under the water at around 20 ft. deep – right? Pretty scary – right? Hell – yeah if you let it get to you! But here is where the power of positive thinking comes in – reinforcing the lessons you learned and trashing all the other crap talk.
So our class made it through and came home ‘certified’ and we had a blast doing it. See during the weekend we were all on a level playing field – inexperienced and in deep-water to boot – but each one of us was anxious to be successful at something we had never done before, beat down those fears and show ourselves that we can conquer new worlds – at any age.
Will I ever get to Malaysia or anywhere in clear, ocean water to try my hand at scuba diving? Couldn’t tell you but what I can tell you is that taking a trip was never the goal of this whole excercise – the goal was to get outside myself and do something unusual. Try it – you will be surpriZed how great it feels.