What If I drown? Oh my darling what if you float?

I absolutely love water but I can’t swim. I love going to swimming pools but only to “Play Ring around the Rosie” and see how long I can hold my breath under water. I love beaches because I love to hear the waves crashing and feel the sand between my toes. I love water but I can’t swim.

It is a known that many African Americans don’t know how to swim; I am proving the theory right. Can our lack of swimming skills be due to a historical context, women not wanting to mess-up their newly styled hair or simply because our parents failed to teach us…

I decided to take an excursion called Johns Gray Sea Canoe while in Phuket, Thailand. I was excited yet apprehensive about canoeing but was assured that I would be ok despite my shortcomings. I entered the boat and went to the top where lunch awaited us. Lunch consisted of fruit, Pad Thai and crispy vegetable rolls. After eating, I decided to go change into my bathing suit.  As I’m walking down the stairs, I notice that they are blowing up the canoes.  In my mind the canoes were supposed to be wooden.  I immediately begin to go into panic mode.  I’m thinking, “Lord I don’t want to die tonight”.  “What if the canoe can’t hold my weight”, “What if the canoe is punctured and the air comes out”.  I go back upstairs and it’s time to put our life jackets on. Unfortunately, my life jacket only buttoned at the top and not on the bottom. On top of that, they introduced me to my paddle guide and he looked to be about 15. Again I’m thinking, “If I drown how is he going to save me”.

 

IMG_0045[1]IMG_0041[1]

“Exploring Caves”

IMG_0042[1]

I somehow managed to get into the kayak with my guide and paddled into a lagoon. I’m lying down and from my view I could see birds circling in the sky, vast rock formations, green water and the sound of peace.  After the lagoon, we went sea cave exploring inside Phang Nga Bay’s. As you are going into the caves, you are instructed to lie down and place your hands as close to your body as you can get. A little air is let out of the kayak as well to actually fit inside the opening of the cave. The space is so small that your face is only inches from the cave opening. As you enter the cave you see bats hovering above. Upon exiting the caves, you are exposed to large beautiful bodies of water as the sun kisses your face. All I could think was “God you made all of this, you are awesome”. After paddling for awhile we were asked if wanted to canoe on our own, of course I politely declined, because remember I can’t swim. LOL. Dinner was served and consisted of a variety of foods including shrimp, chicken, rice and vegetables.

After dinner we made a self floating flower called a “Kratong”. Just as I had begun to get used to the kayak in the day, they informed us that we were going to kayak one more time. At this point its pitch black, and I feel as if we are the only boat in the water. I mustered up enough confidence and got back into my canoe with my guide. We lit the floating flower and allowed it to float in the water. Afterwards we blew out the candle, swished our hand in the water and saw dinoflagellates (bioluminescent plankton). If you don’t know what that is, imagine little glowing sparkletts in the water.

“Kratong”

IMG_0044[1]

FullSizeRender IMG_0043[1]

I must say that this was one of the best excursions. Despite my love of water but fear of drowning in a large pool of water, I’m glad I conquered my fears. False Evidence Appearing Real could have preventing me from going on this tour and I would have missed out on great food, the opportunity to meet other travellers, Gods beautiful creation and a life time of memories. Yes I know, I need to learn how to swim! It is my goal to learn how to swim, so that I can enjoy other water activities without being scared that I am going to Die! Well thank God I floated and did not drown!

 

 

54 Comments

  1. Awesome. I learned how to swim at 36. You can do it.
    You definitely have a way with words. I felt like, I was there with you.

    • Hi Melissa! Thank you so much for reading, I appreciate it! I’ve wanted to blog for years, but only recently started. Your comments let me know that I am on the write path as it relates to blogging. Please subscribe to keep up with future articles!

    • Yes it is important many people fail to reach there full potential due to fear. Nope thats not crazy at all, you have faith your swimming skills and life jacket will save you. I havent got the courage to jump into the ocean just yet.. lol

  2. Beautiful pictures! I’m thankful that my mom put me in swimming classes when I was young. I’m looking forward to see a future post where you’re sharing your swimming experiences around the world! 🙂

    • Thank you! I don’t even think my mom was thinking about this type of stuff, she was focused on the day to day things.. Yes Tia you gave me motivation, nice headline for a post Here and now: swimming experiences around the world.

  3. Yes!! So much yes! I am so proud of you for going through with this adventure even with your fears. This is exactly why I blog, to push people out of their comfort zones. I have your same reaction every time I see God’s creation. I’m in awe ever single time. I’m pinning this for future reference because when I finally get to Thailand this is definitely up my alley.

    • God is absolutely awesome, I think he allows us to experience travel so we can see his goodness! Yes if you go to Thailand (Phuket) this is a must do. Right i think we have similar missions, I want to inspire others to do things they may not normally do!

    • LOL you sound like me, I love the water but can’t swim. I really want to do parasailing and snorkeling on one of my next trips.

    • LOL believe I almost didn’t do it but I was like I am here, payed my money and prayed to God, everything should work out.

    • Yes it was super pretty. I’m glad we had the opportunity to participate in making them before they floated in the water. I have a love hate relationship with water. I love it but can be terrified of large bodies of water as well.

  4. Go you! You conquered your fear and that is so important. I have my children in lessons so that when they get older and start to travel, it’s one less thing they have to worry about. I consider swimming a life skill.

    • I agree it is a much needed skill. I’ve heard that it used to be school educational requirement in certain schools. Not sure why they don’t feel that it is a necessary skill. When I have children they will be taking swim lessons as babies.

    • I’m so glad I faced it head on because this was my favorite excursion from the whole trip and it wasn’t even planned like my other activities.

    • This so true, often times we don’t confront of fears and are often what could have happened, well why not just find out instead of wondering.

  5. My best friend and her sister-in-law were just telling me about swimming in a bat filled cave. I know how to swim, but I doubt I would do that. Question: are you going to take lessons now?

    • LOL the bats are high in the ceiling of the cave, so have no fear they will be no where near you. I want to take lessons but I honestly have made no moves to do so.

    • Thank you so much, I was having a conversation and someone said they are afraid of failure- being fearful we have you stuck standing in the same place with no end results.

  6. That’s so great that you conquered your fear! I’m the same way, and conquered my fear a couple of years ago. I have been meaning to take swim lessons so I can take my vacations to the next level!

    • You hit it on the nail, I have conquered some water activities but I would love to try more such as jumping off the side of a board to snorkel or scuba dive. Hopefully we will both be signing up for swim lessons soon.

  7. This is beautiful! I love the water. I remember we did a Canoe adventure on a couples trip where they set us out in the water and we didn’t know where the end was or how long we would be out there. Talk about gears, team building and testing love. Lol! Awesome story!

    • I have never been on a couples trip but it sounds like lots of fun. Sometimes you have to test the love and relationship- that means that you can get through the difficult parts of the relationship. How long were you out there on the water- canoeing is no joke in regards to using your arm muscles to row.

Leave a Reply