Diving the Dream
Contributed by CatherineA
are some things in life you fantasise about. Dream of doing but never get around
to; the timing is not quite right or age takes over and you leave your dreams
for someone younger to fulfil. As a child I spent countless hours in water;
pretending to be a fish, mermaid; or a dolphin. Even my fantasies of revenge
took on the media of water with my enemies being fed to sharks in the imaginary
sea of my mind.
The desire to take to the water has been with me all my life. At some point
though fear took over. Maybe it was watching the movie Jaws or the realisation
that life is fragile and nature, though beautiful, is harsh.
fears were rekindled when finally, with my husband’s encouragement, I
took a resort dive off Port Douglas. Never one to be rushed and always liking
to be in control this was not the dive for me. That first mouthful of water
after removing the regulator to demonstrate I could correctly purge was enough.
I panicked and shot to the surface only to be lectured about how I could kill
myself. This was not the way to learn or experience diving at nearly forty years
I began to think diving was too dangerous for me. That I had lost my chance
and should have tried it when I was carefree and young. Nine months later I
signed up for an Open Water Course determined to give it a go and try to overcome
the anxiety of my first attempt. It is certain that the staff at the dive shop
thought I was mad. They had probably never been asked so many questions: “What
does it feel like to breath under water?”, “What happens if you
pani the first time in the water?”, “Are there big sharks out in
is now short of a year since I finished my course. There was no panic, some
anxiety related to the unknown and a great sense of achievement. With thirty
three dives logged and the completion of my Advanced Open Water course I am
almost at home in the ocean as I had dreamed of being as a child.
Throughout the year I have enjoyed the beautiful playground of Moreton Bay.
Engaged with turtles, giant groupers, photographed wobbegongs and been entranced
by the largest aquarium I could imagine. Diving
has opened up a new world to me, not just the marine world but the earth itself
as I search out new dive experiences and locations.
Diving and divers are great fun. People who share a love of the beauty and
the diversity of life. They and the oceans they dive have opened up a new world
to me and allowed me to overcome the biggest barrier to life: my mind.