From Our Readers: You, Me, and the Sea
The beach is a safe haven. It is where the skies are always blue. The sound of the crashing waves against the shore somehow brings comfort. In the beach, I was safe. In the beach, I was comfortable.
Until you came. You convinced me that life happens outside of my comfort zone. You made me walk absentmindedly towards the sea when I know that the solid ground was where I was safe. With all sincerity, you held my hand and led me to the shore.
We took a lot of small steps until I can feel the water slowly rise from my ankles to my knees. It was terrifying to be carried out of my safe zone, but you were there. You became my solid ground in the middle of the sea. My fears, my doubts, they all faded. And there I was, body fully submerged in water.
You became my solid ground in the middle of the sea. My fears, my doubts, they all faded.
But it was a mistake. I depended on you too much. I knew I didn't know how to swim, yet I let myself be surrounded by nothing but water. Yes, you were there—my anchor, my life vest—but you left. You decided that you do not have the strength to keep us both afloat. You let me go. And I drowned.
Panic took over my whole being. There was nothing but the sky and the sea. There was nothing for me to hold on to. Water evaded my lungs and my senses started to fail me. I was ready to finally close my eyes when I looked up and saw the sun. It would have been a beautiful day if I were in the shore—collecting shells, making castles, drawing in the sand, smiling. I wanted to be back in the shore.
So I kicked my legs and kept my head up. I fought the waves, fought for my breath, and pushed myself towards the sand. The struggle was hard but I made it. Sometimes, I get nightmares. Sometimes, I panic at the mere sight of the sea. But the sea is such a beautiful place to get lost in. I was just unprepared. You must learn to swim even if someone's willing to be your anchor.
The struggle was hard but I made it. Sometimes, I get nightmares. Sometimes, I panic at the mere sight of the sea. But the sea is such a beautiful place to get lost in.
Although my experience taught me valuable lessons, I must take into consideration that it almost took my life. Now I set my distance. I've built a sea wall. I can still see the sea from afar, and all the people playing in the waves. Sometimes seeing them happy makes me cringe, sometimes the roar of laughter calls me back to the shore. I almost did. God knows I almost did. But I promised myself I will not go back until I am fully able to swim, to keep myself alive while enjoying the tide.