Day 1 – Wednesday

I have gone back and forth a lot on what I want to do for this project and have been very indecisive about it. My top three skills to learn were photography, sushi making, and diving. But after recently breaking my ankle pole vaulting and being quickly swept out of any sport that requires running, I have been left sport-less for the first time in my life. So that made the decision obvious. So today after school while I was helping student council make a video for homecoming, I ran over to talk to one of the divers. Nate. He’s a cool dude and I’ve spoken to him a little bit about it and he always told me to join the team. (He and the coach are my experts) So, I walked up to the trampoline where he was hanging out before practice, told him the situation and he told me to put my suit on.

Good Start.

I wasn’t expecting to start this quickly, but luckily I always have an emergency swimsuit in my car… I came back and met Courtney, the diving coach. She told me I got some stuff (register with USA diving) to do before I’m allowed on anything. So, I did the stuff and now look at me. I’m officially a diver.

Small wins!

Ok, so I’m a diver now. Here comes the scary part. A little background: I am terrified of heights but love adrenaline, so here I am.  Courtney said she just wants me to do… I think she called it a front jump. But I think she meant pencil. I was doing pencil dives, there’s a lot more to it than I thought. Here’s what I took away.

  • Core tight cause (I stick my belly out for some reason)
  • Don’t jump out (The board does that already)
  • Point your toes (when you don’t it splashes and that called a rip)*
  • Arms up!

 

I did three jumps on the 1-meter board and it was cake. But then Courtney says “Alright let’s go to the 3-meter board,”  For context: The 3-meter board is the one you can’t see from the ground because it’s too high to see without a telescope.

“yes, ma’am,” I say, holding down my lunch.

I climbed up the ladder halfway paralyzed and white-knuckling the handlebars, inched my way to the end of the board and looked down.

Pro-tip: Don’t look down.

I was immediately taken back cliff diving in Jamaica. I had the same problem. Great at the small jumps, paralyzed by the big ones. There was a guy in Jamaica helping people jump off this crazy high cliff because otherwise, they would just stand there.

Like I was on the diving board replaying this in my head…

All this guy said was “Jump on three. Ready? One. Two. Three.” And they would, it was a miracle.

This was almost four years ago and I still remember it vividly because for some reason it really clicks.

After that, I carved 1 2 3 on my sunglasses and used it with everything. Before buying something at Walmart 1 2 3, swipe. Going on a run 1 2 3, run. And before every single jump pole vaulting 1 2 3, jump.

After 3 I become confident and fearless. Ready to conquer the world and a 3-meter pencil dive.

“1 2 3, jump”

And I did, and it was exhilarating and I did it again and again and one more time after that.