Reaching “The Other Side” with Practice


Throughout my life, I always wanted to “swim out to the log” or “swim to the dock” but I held back because of my anxiety and fear of drowning.

I admired the brave swimmers on “the other side” sunbathing and laughing on the floating dock from afar and wished I could be out there.

This summer, I practiced swimming several times (25+ swims in BC lakes and ocean). I’m a competent swimmer in shallow waters, when I know I can touch bottom or I’m close to shore. 

But I knew that if I tried harder, I could push myself to swim further and deeper.

Last week, I took my son and his cousins to the lake. For the first time ever, I swam out from the dock to this log — three times!

I don’t know how deep the lake is, but it was dark, murky, mysterious — way out of my comfort zone…and I couldn’t see bottom with my goggles. 

I was scared, but I did it!

The young boys had no problem swimming out to that log, but we were all out of breath when we reached it, with chilly lake-kissed skin and proud smiles.

This isn’t a big achievement for competent swimmers, but for me — it’s a huge milestone and I’m braver and stronger for trying.

On swimming…to the other side. Photo by MC.

Author: Mary Chang Story Writer: Inspiration, Creativity, Self-Empowerment

I'm an award-winning short story writer, published memoir article writer and lifelong "work in progress" towards becoming a better writer. Writing self-empowers me to share my voice and may inspire you to create your own stories or reflect about your own life journey. I capture life's moments that make me self-reflect, laugh, cry, scream, be curious, draw me into the past or somewhere new that scares me. Sometimes I tell a story in six words, sometimes in thousands. Someday, a novel. People who read my stories sometimes laugh, cry, nod, reflect or ask for more. Sometimes they don't. I hope that you do.

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