“If you want to fly on the sky, you need to leave the earth. If you want to move forward, you need to let go the past that drags you down.” ~ Amit Ray, World Peace: The Voice of Mountain Bird.
Sometimes life can repeatedly serve us with a difficult menu.
We all make mistakes in life, but how we deal with them reflects on our ability to forgive ourselves and move on. We make detours and wrong choices, but how fast we get back on track reflects our resilience in life. We need to remind ourselves giving up on ourselves is never an option.
I had a first experience with scuba diving while obtaining my certificate in this extreme sport. It was one of the things on my bucket list. I learned so much about myself and my limitations on this trip, overcame some of my fears and had time to think about my life and the challenging year that had gone by.
As I stood on the metal steps before my first dive into the sea, each action I took symbolized my outlook on life.
Wearing those awkward flippers and carrying the weight of the oxygen tank on my back, I realised how hard my life had been. Standing on the metal steps and feeling the growing reluctance to make the jump, I realised how hard it was for me to let go and overcome my fear. It was so much easier for the rest of my diving buddies to jump. I am a person who thinks and analyses too much. I take life too seriously.
Fear, lack of self-confidence and unfamiliarity arose and the weight of the oxygen tank made me fear I would sink into the depth of the sea. It was such a difficult task for me to let go of the burden and responsibilities of everyday life. I recalled the failure of a relationship and the aftermath of self-blame, denial and letting it go. Moving on was a difficult process. It didn’t help that I had to juggle the stress of a break up with a set back in my business life at the same time.
We need to let time heal us. And to surpass the fear of the future. When we feel like everything is falling apart, that is when it’s all coming together. We need to have faith in ourselves.
I said a small prayer and I jumped.
I felt the freedom and release when I hit the water. It was much easier than I expected. I laughed at myself for hesitating for so long.
As I made my descent into the waters, I welcomed the beautiful silence, and being one with the fishes and the colourful coral reefs made me realised how beautiful the underwater universe was—there is so much beauty around us, if only we open our eyes wide and see what is ahead of us.
I also discovered my limitations in diving. I had problems with equalising the pressure in my right ear and how I dealt with this situation made me understand how far I could push myself but at the same time stay safe.
We need to strike a balance between managing risk and overcoming obstacles. Sometimes after we have given our best and it is not well-received, it is acceptable to let it go—for our own sanity and well-being.
Having a dive buddy made me realise that I could depend on and trust someone else besides myself. We had to do safety drills together and sharing my dive buddy’s secondary breathing apparatus was a strange feeling. I had been independent all this while and was so accustomed to completing tasks by myself. Trust was something I really struggled with and needed to work on.
Sometimes when we are faced with a problem, we block out all the beauty of the present moment and the people who truly love us. We fail to see what truly matters. We take for granted the blessings in life.
It also made me realise how much my parents loved me. My mother was so worried about my trip—she told me she hadn’t slept for two nights and was relieved when I returned home.
I wanted to be different—I wanted to be in control of my mind and create a new future. I wanted to let go of fear.
I returned from this diving weekend a new person. I received so much more than just a diving certificate—a gift of getting in touch with my true authentic self. I discovered I could push myself to do things that I never thought I could do. I learnt to enjoy the journey and the people around me and take life a little less seriously. I learnt to love myself more and know that, despite my failures, I have so much to be proud of and taking a leap of faith is the only way to live life to the fullest.
We all forget to smile and laugh but sometimes we need to feel like a carefree child again and and enjoy just being human.
“Time doesn’t heal emotional pain, you need to learn how to let go.” ~ Roy T. Bennett, The Light in the Heart
Author: Michelle Hardie
Image: Author’s own.
Editor: Katarina Tavčar