Learning to Dive

Rooted and unrooted, placid and choppy, buoyant and flat. It’s all happening, internally, externally, and both at the same time. There’s movement in and out of various external situations and internal states. They feed off each other, and sometimes they don’t seem related at all. Some of them feel easy, some don’t. I remember learning to swim in the ocean. The first time a big wave came it knocked me around and I swam against it and lost air and hit the sandy bottom hard and thought I would die. But I didn’t.

The person with me said, “Oh I didn’t realize you didn’t know you should hold your breath and just go with it when a wave knocks you down.” I was taught that when a big wave comes it’s better not to fight it, to hold my breath while it does what it will, knocks me around, and then passes. Then I can pop up for air.

Later I figured out how to see the wave coming, time it, and dive into it, coming out the other side as we both move forward, the wave and I. It became a game. Watch for the wall of water coming at me, and know the easiest, surest, most enjoyable way to address it is to move toward it, get right into it, and then come out the other side, hair slicked back by the water, face pointed up toward the sun.

Yes. Tough situations and feelings are like the big waves in that I wasn’t born knowing how to address them most effectively for me. I am still learning. I’ve been through some methods that have kept me alive, and that’s great. Survival is a plus.

I’m interested in a bit more enjoyment of the ride now. A way of being that’ll help me dolphin through it, all of it, not just holding my breath, gritting my teeth, manning up, bearing with it, but loving my life, all of it, and loving myself, all of me.

Breathing, diving, treading, resting, jumping, floating, getting knocked around, knocked down, popping back up. It’s all happening. I might as well learn how to have a nice time. I'm thinking I might try diving in.