A few weeks ago my husband and I went to Cancun. It was an incentive for VIVINT and he got it, so I was lucky enough to tag along. Anyway, on the last day there my husband wanted to do something with just the two of us. He mentioned renting jet ski’s for the day, and I absolutely refused. You see, I have a beyond terrible fear of sharks. Not just sharks, but pretty much anything in the ocean that is large and could potentially eat or bite me. You know; sharks, baracudas, whales, etc. The thought of bouncing around on waves in a tiny jet ski made me want to throw up. What if I fell off and a SHARK ATE ME!? (For the record, I can ride jet skis all day in Utah lakes. There are no sharks in lakes there! At least I hope not.) So, we settled for a boat ride through the jungle and snorkeling in a cove. Snorkeling, snorkeling, I thought. I can do that. Small fish, no danger, away from the wide open ocean, I can do that! So we show up for our reservation, and they lead us to our, “boat.” Aka JET SKI! My heart is racing, but I don’t show my husband. I know he went out of the way to do something nice for me and I wasn’t about to show him that I was beyond freaking out. He immediately starts telling me, “its going to be okay, this is going to be fun! You’ll be glad you did it.” Meanwhile, I’m writing my death will in my head. Who will take our kids if we die? How long will it take our friends to figure out that we are gone? Will they ship our bodies back to the US so we can be buried there?
Next thing I know, I’m on a jet ski with my husband holding onto him for dear life, and we take off! The first part of the trip didn’t scare me too much, the jungle was pretty and I thought we were almost there. NOPE, we still had a long ways to go. We start jet skiing in the middle of the ocean to who knows where, and the people we are following apparently did not know how to drive in a straight line. We end up riding their wake and bouncing up and down, water is spraying me straight in my eyes, and the wind is not making it any better. It was about this point I knew this experience was not going to be a good one, I tucked my head behind my husband while tears came rolling down my face. I couldn’t even look at the water, or even think about the creatures that lied below. The whole time I just kept thinking to myself, “it’ll all be better when you get to the cove. It’ll be relaxing, this will be fun!”
We finally arrive, and when I get the courage to unbury my head from behind my husbands, my mouth dropped. We weren’t in a secluded cove. We were in the middle of the freaking ocean!!! All I see is ocean all around me for miles and miles. My husband straps on his fins and jumps right in, he takes my hand excitedly and says, “you ready?” I blamed it on the fact that the trip made me queasy. (Which it did, just not in the way he was thinking) but I had to sit on the jet ski for a minute and try to regain composure.
After a minute I jumped in. The water was freezing compared to the shore, which immediately made me on edge. When I looked under water for the first time, the first thing I saw was two under water buoys. They looked like two giant eye balls coming from some kind of alien fish. Let me tell ya, that was the wrong thing to spot first glance and it was all downhill from there. My mind registered that it was not a fish, but my heart was racing out of my chest. I kept looking behind me thinking something was there. I couldn’t control my body because my life vest was holding me up so high, and the wake was pushing me further out in the ocean which I DID NOT like. I didn’t realize how terrified I was of the ocean until that moment. It wasn’t just sharks or huge under water creatures I was afraid of. Apparently it was the whole experience of it, and the fear of the unknown. So many things live in the Ocean. You can’t see them, but you know they’re there and could come lurking up at any moment. Once this registered, I picked my head up out of the water and immediately starting sobbing. Full on ugly face crying going on, and my whole body started shaking uncontrollably. Oh man, I wish you all could have seen my husbands face. It was a mixture between shock, compassion, and pure confusion. Priceless.
The funny part is, at this point we hadn’t even seen a single fish! Also, did I mention the water was shallow? My life vest didn’t allow me to touch the bottom, and I’m only 5’3″ okay? He scooped me up and carried me back to the jet skis. He sat with me for a minute, tried to calm me down, and I could feel everyone around us staring. Here I am, grown adult having a full on panic attack over snorkeling. Probably one of the least dangerous things you can do in Cancun. I saw a 12 year old little boy flapping his fins, so excited about this giant fish he just found. So, I got some more courage and tried again. This time we saw lots of fish. A whole school of fish came right at us and swarmed all around us. I could feel them touch me as they swam by. So, what did I do? I start climbing up my husband like a cat out of water! Literally holding onto him for dear life as I sobbed uncontrollably! I think at that point he knew it was a lost cause, considering I was hyperventilating over a school of tiny fish.
For the record, my husband was pretty amazing about everything. The whole way home he kept telling me how bad he felt, and he really just wanted to do something fun that I had never done before.
So, now I know. I am 100% deathly afraid of the ocean. Lets hope our ship doesn’t sink if we are ever on a cruise liner. Also, I wasn’t always afraid of the Ocean. I grew up in California for crying out loud, and would have races with my dad and sisters to see who could make it out the farthest! Then, I moved to Utah and watched JAWS for the first time. Moral of the story- Don’t let your kids watch JAWS!!