Plunging into my Fears

January 17, 2013 20 Comments »

The beach where my fear lived

The beach where my fear lived

I had made up my mind, I wasn’t going to do it. Nope. Not doing it. Yes, I was feeling slightly guilty, but dammit it was cold outside. I’m old, and maybe I should just be ok with acting my age for once – I don’t need to prove anything.

The wind was howling, and the fact that once you actually plunged yourself into the freezing cold water then you had to run back to the beach, dry off – OUTSIDE, put all of your warm clothes back on over your freezing wet ones, and finally take a zodiac back to the boat was just a bit too daunting. It’s Antarctica for God sakes – no one really need to expose themselves that long to the elements all for a silly challenge and bragging rights. Damn bragging rights.

I had made up my mind. I was going to sit back and watch. Maybe take a few photos, but stay in my warm Canada Goose jacket snug and surrounded by feathers. I had decided to officially ignore the Facebook comment by my friend Warren who when he saw I was at Deception Island said “ I hope you are planning to swim. We’ll need pictures to brighten our day.”
Damn you Warren. I will say that the internet connection was down and that I never saw that . Poof – it’s out of my mind.

But then I made the mistake of eating lunch with her and that’s when she said it…

She innocently polled the table of people to see who was planning on doing the polar plunge later that afternoon on our 2nd landing at Deception Island. I was sitting with people may age or older and everyone of them one by one said they were going to pass. I felt a little anxiety drift into my body, and as I swallowed hard before I replied, “No, I don’t think I’m going to do it.”

“Reeeaaally?!” she replied in an astonished voice. “I thought of all the people on the boat that you would do have to do it for your writing!” she quipped.

I smiled. I sat silent – but my brain was going in overdrive. Dammit. This morning I had forgotten that I was a writer, a blogger – here to cover things. I had started to believe that I was just like everyone else on the cruise – having a vacation – carefree. But dammit, she had a point. She somehow tapped directly into my weak spot – work, obligation, and responsibility. I actually should do it I thought to myself.  Stupid ‘should’.

The guilt was starting to tug harder and harder at my brain. I was mad. I was weak. I decided to wear my running clothes under my landing apparel just in case.

But honestly I already knew. My whole body slumped in the surrender – I had to do it.


You can follow in Sherry’s footsteps all the way to Antarctica. Plan your trip of a lifetime to Antarctica with ExpeditionTrips and save 5% on your voyage rate – exclusively for OttsWorld followers

Disclosure: ExpeditionTrips and G Adventures hosted my Antarctic Peninsula Cruise. However, all of the opinions expressed here are my own – as you know how I love to speak my mind!

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