How I Overcame My Fear Of Water

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Since I was a little girl I’d been afraid of the ocean, hair prickling all over my body, afraid. I could feel the sensation of my heart palpitating. I stood paralyzed, traumatized for life as the dolphin passed by the small circled window to greet me. All the other kids were saturated with happiness, but I had been scarred for life. I don’t know whether it was the dolphin, or the blue depth of the aquarium tank that scared me but after that day, I knew I couldn’t bear to be there any longer. I was not frightened nor was I afraid. What I felt was beyond such mere nouns. I realized my fear was more than just the ocean when I attended a family pool party. I canon balled in the pool and immediately wanted to rush out once I took a glance at the deep end. My heart sunk into my stomach. It felt as if a shark was going to come from beneath and eat me whole. I swam up, yelling at the top of my lungs until my dad helped me out. When I was 8, I realized that I couldn’t watch any movies that had to do with oceans. It was so bad it reached the point that “Nemo” had me shaking in my seat. Then one day my dad forced me to get into the water, letting me know there was nothing to be afraid of. Wasn’t as easy as it sounds, I took baby steps. Many times I ran back to the sand as soon as I caught a glimpse of the tiny guppy fish swimming around ready to tickle attack my feet. Soon enough I got used to being inside, of course, I was hanging on my dad’s back the whole time but it was a step. I was floating around making sure I didn’t touch the ocean floor. This step lasted about 9 years, whenever I went to the beach with friends, I would blow up a floaty to keep me afloat. But Soon I could touch the ground, watch movies, and jump in the pool, but of course to extent. It all changed the day my stepdad took me out on his boat one day, boy was I scared.

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We set sail at Key Biscayne. We rode for an hour to a little island with a beach bar, there wasn’t much sand and the water was up to your knees but it was warm and clear as day. You can even hear the chirps of thousands of bugs in the trees, which got quite annoying. The ride there was the most mesmerizing and blissful moment of my life. The waves rocking back and forth, the smell of the salty water, the wind attacking my face, making my hair 10 times more volumized. I couldn’t stop staring. My mind cleared, and my stress had gone. Suddenly the boat stops and I hear my stepdad scream “look dolphins!”. I looked overboard and I was in complete awe I couldn’t believe my eyes, they were beautiful and majestic. Nothing like I saw before. They quickly had faded into the sea and I wished for more time with them. That day I realized I had nothing to be afraid of what I feared was beautiful and I was keeping myself from experiencing it. The feeling it gave me was different. I didn’t want to leave. The ocean was my peace. Every weekend I was asking to be taken to the beach, given a ride on the boat. Every opportunity I had I would take it. I wasn’t going to miss this ever again.

Today I still can’t seem to be able to snorkel I just can’t fathom the idea of me snorkeling, seeing every creature that lies beneath me. There are times when I can’t look at or watch a movie containing whales or very detailed showings of the coral reef. But I’m a step closer. I’ve tried paddle boarding, kayaking, jet-skiing, boating, and I still have more to try. I still have a fear of the ocean but I’m not letting that stop me from experiencing such a blissful and majestic place. I’ve come to learn that “the best things in life are on the other side of fear”. The ocean leaves me feeling free and happy. I can’t believe I let one childhood experience rob me of what could’ve been the best days of my life.

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