It’s no secret, I think the ocean looks better from the shore, or a boat. Anything other than actually getting in the water because, you know, sharks are in the water.
This paralyzing fear has been with me since I was a wee child, yet slowly, I’m working towards facing that fear head on.
I was ready to try snorkeling at the pristine Chileno beach between Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo.
Ten a.m. and the far side of the beach was empty. I wanted seclusion in case I failed to conquer my fear. The temperature was perfect in the water and out. I donned my mask, san fins, and slowly entered my nemesis….
The strength of the tide surprised and scared me initially, but once I became used to the motion, I let it pull me freely as I surveyed the underwater landscape. Brimming with life, schools of fish moved quickly between coral and stone.
Needle fish were seemingly motionless, crabs scurried to hide upon my approach, and all other manner of sea life came out to view the new visitor.
Paranoia did keep my head constantly turning to search for sharks, and the shadows and light created images that made me imagine horrible scenarios that in reality were nothing.
I didn’t venture too deep or swim out too far, but that was fine by me.
The goal was to not chicken out and actually get in the ocean, and in that respect, I surpassed all of my own expectations, and can now push the envelope even further next time.