Before the New Year, Team Marie Claire faced their fears and did what they thought was impossible for the longest time. Read about their experiences before, during and after , maybe you too will get inspired to do that one thing you’ve been putting off forever!
“I Took The Plunge”
Pamela Victor, Lifestyle Writer
Being in the water always scared me. I never learnt how to swim when I was a child, and being the paranoid person that I am, I was always expecting a Final Destination scene to take place when I got into the water, be it swimming in the sea or in a pool . I also remember having a couple of near-drowning experiences where I accidentally got swept away into deeper water and had difficulty staying above the surface.
It was always a nightmare. Swimming to me meant standing by the edge of a pool while my friends did laps or I would ride piggyback on one of them so that I’d be above water. Last year, I made a promise to myself (and my close friends who knew how difficult it was to get me in the water) that I would stop being afraid. I even made a mental note to look up swimming classes, but as the months went by, it was to no avail as I couldn’t find one that fitted my budget or timing.
My first leap of faith took place when I went on holiday with my best friend to Kota Kinabalu. It was just the two of us and she really wanted to snorkel once we got to the islands. Due to the guilt card she was pulling, I agreed to follow her into the water—to snorkel and to actually learn how to stay afloat while submerging my head underwater to look at corals!
I must admit it took a lot of persuasion, a lot of convincing and a truckload of trust before I finally did it. And I never felt more satisfied. It may have been just snorkelling but I felt like that experience was a very crucial step forward. Soon after that day, I went on a media trip that required me to get in a deep pool. I wasn’t with friends or anyone I was familiar with that I could count on to keep an eye on me but I got into the pool without hesitation—and without fear. I used some tips that I had learnt from my friends, easing into the pool slowly. There were, however, times when I imagined myself slipping on the floor of the pool and losing my balance, so I made sure I didn’t go too far away from the edge of the pool. I told myself I’d get out the moment the slightest bit of (aqua) anxiety hit.
I decided to hit the pool once again once I was home. With a couple of friends by my side, I felt less anxious and tried to remain calm while trying to float. It took some time but once I did it, I knew I had conquered my fear. It felt amazing being able to do something that I had been holding back my entire life. I learnt that with a little bit of faith and trust, anything is possible after all!