No Fear

IMG_8133wpfearThis might not be the biggest wave of Hurricane Sandy but to me it’s one of my favorite photos from that storm.

This wave is in Fernandina Beach, FL. It has never been the easiest place to surf. It is a shallow beach break, which means, that it tends to break fast and is unforgiving. When you don’t make a wave here at low tide, especially in bigger waves, it can feel like hitting concrete.

So, it’s not a good idea to learn to surf in hurricane waves. In places where surfing is more a part of the local culture, people don’t mind paying their dues in the white water.

Things are changing here on the island, and more and more people are enjoying the water, and getting out there, on whatever vehicle that suits them. The ocean is for everyone.

I wonder what this anonymous surfer went through to learn.

If he was younger, there was always the bigger guys in line-up. It can be intimidating. I got an up close view of the groms during Sandy and believe me, they had their issues out there. It was a good thing for me to witness. Surfing, no matter what level, is an avenue to manuever and master social issues.

Surfing can be as scary, as it is fun.

There’s always something new to learn and something to overcome. Like your first time in big waves or surfing a reef.

And there’s always the shark issue.

I’ve got a few good shark stories to tell. Anyone that spends a lot of time in and on the water is going to.

But the biggest shark stories, that I could tell, are the ones that were in my head. I use to always have that fear lurking. I acted like it wasn’t there and I wondered if that’s what other people did too. But then one day it just went away.

I don’t want to jump out there and seem cavalier;  I just want to say, don’t let fear stop you from doing anything you want to.

Life is meant for living.

That guy would have never caught that wave and I wouldn’t have photographed it, or wrote this post if fear ruled.

Bare in mind that as I give this advice, I am absorbing it myself, I always need to be reminded:

  1. Relax
  2. Take your time
  3. Don’t let nay sayers stop you
  4. Enjoy yourself
  5. Don’t compare yourself
  6. Have faith
  7. Do it!

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