I woke up feeling anxious. So, of course, when I got to the beach in the evening and saw that it was 4-5 foot onshore close outs (AGAIN), my anxiety erupted. It felt like I was being stabbed in the sternum and I felt nauseous. The anxiety prevents me from eating so I was lightheaded already. Two girls were playing music in their car, post-surf, short boards tucked into the car and they just looked cool – they freaked me out. There’s no explaining the weird sensation that is anxiety. Every possible thing can make me uneasy.
‘Will you just relax?’ my partner exclaimed.
‘But I’m sick of the white-water; I want to work on the unbroken waves but I can’t.’ I waxed my board up and tried to quell the anxiety with breathing exercises. I eventually started to cry and I explained my real fear: I worry that I will never get the confidence to become a better surfer.
Confidence came and greeted me, but then I couldn’t surf for three weeks because I had no car and I was working long hours every day, and then confidence was gone. The onshore close outs every.single.damn.day has not helped. So that’s what I worry about. I worry I will never get confident.
As I played in the white-water, my heart was thumping. The rip sucked at me and I had to actually tell myself to breathe. Then after a while…the anxiety dissipated. The water was with me. I had some really long rides on the white-water so I could (sort of) practise bottom turns (keep that back arm up woman!). I caught a few reforming waves so it was kind of like a green wave. I stayed out there until my anxiety turned into joy and my joy turned to contentment. The tide shifted and the sun set.
It worked out in the end. A great night = a great surf (even if it wasn’t what I wanted).