Saturday, April 24, 2010

Don't panic, its just a WHAT?!

Well, I survived my first day of our open water scuba dives. It was interesting and far more different than I was expecting. I mean, I knew that it would be very different from a pool. In the pool I was very confident with the skills that I had learned. I think everything just went out of the window and I panicked. Yeah. It was just fantastic. Oddly enough, even though the water was in the low 50's, I wasn't as cold as I thought I was going to be. That was a definite plus. The tips of my fingers and my lips we frozen, but the rest of me was quite warm (yes, this is coming from the girl who wears jackets in the summer).

Okay, so my first dive today was a little scary. We got out in the water and we are supposed to start going under by letting all the air out of our vests. Nope. Not me. I can't get myself to sink to save my life. So, they add more weight to my vest to try and help me get down. When I put my face in the water I realize that I can't see anything-no instructor and no dive buddy (at this point I am screaming in my head to see somebody, ANYBODY!). I start to panic. My instructor comes to me and yanks me down towards the bottom. I am relieved, but also freaked out. At some point during my panic I throw up. Gross, I know. I have no clue why, but it happened. Back to the rest of the story...I am trying to breathe normally. My instructor was really great. He did his best to stay near me...and if he got farther away from me than I wanted, I went after him.

As we are swimming around he is shining his flashlight on different things for me to look at-none of which I care to see. I am in the water to get certified. Period. I don't care about whats in the water...I don't want to know whats in there with me. All of a sudden he stops and my friend, Jackie, and the two dive instructors are looking at something. I turn and look in the same direction and saw an eel. An EEL!! These are the critters they told us would be HIDING in rocks! Not this one. Its completely out in the open just sitting there. Everyone thinks it is so cool. I see it and almost have a heart attack and literally jump on my instructor's back. Jackie saw me and laughed really hard at the sight of this. After that little event the dive is, thankfully, over.

As we are coming out of the water and walking back onto the beautiful solid land my husband asks me what I thought about my first dive. I looked at him and said that it was awful and I wasn't going back in. At this point I am finished. You couldn't pay me enough to get back in. One of the other instructors (there's like 5 of them), Tina, heard me mention that I wasn't going to finish the class and gives me a hug. She then tells me when we get back in (I roll my eyes because I KNOW that's not happening) that she will hold my hand. I tell her thank you, but I don't think that's going to happen. Well, my dive buddy, Jackie, somehow convinces me to just try-get in the water and if I don't like it then I can be done. I think about it and talk myself into it. I also talked myself right back out of it on our way into the water, but she was right there talking me back in. She's such a good friend.

Dive two thankfully went a LOT better. I was definitely calm (minus the beginning of the dive...mask malfunction) this time around. We made it to the bottom, I did all my skills (I did them well...hehe just tooting my little horn here for a sec), and then we popped up to the surface. Now, I was finished and ready to be back on shore, but I didn't want Jackie (who is totally loving this!) to miss out on more dive time, so the two instructors split us up and we each went different ways. I went to the dry land and Jackie went farther and deeper.

On the way back I did see some really cute little fish and there are these jelly fish that don't sting and are super tiny (think the floating things in Avatar) and adorable. Tina was leading the way back when all of a sudden she steers me more to the right (we were headed left). I had finally relaxed a little watching the little schools of fish. I gathered by how quickly we changed courses that there MUST be something to the left. She did this a couple of times. I found out when we made it back to shore that there was something in the water (she won't tell me what it was) that she knew I would freak out about. Smart cookie!

So, that's what happened today with my first two dives. I have 2 more tomorrow that I can honestly say I am NOT looking forward to, but because I am so close to getting certified, I am going to try. I may never use my certification, but at least I can say I have one. :)


HattonHome said...

Wow! Well, I don't think you want my opinion on the actual events or what I think of them ;) So I will just say Thank You for sharing your thoughts, I love love love reading your blog!

I do hope that you are "ok" and I wish you lots of happiness today and everyday :)

Mike, Brenda, Jared and Marissa said...

Your are so brave! Great job going out of your comfort zone - I'm really proud of you! =)

Ashley said...

ack! I think I would be really scared as well. My husband talks about getting certified, but I'm not sure that I'll join him in the process. But who knows, maybe I will? Good for you for trying it again! Where did you dive?

Natalie said...

of course I want your opinion sis! :)Thanks for your support! I will have to tell you everything in person! :)
Thanks Brenda! :) That means a lot to me! :)
Ashley, we went up to Washington to Hoodsport. Its a diving town. Its cute. :)