Sunday, May 29, 2011's getting to be a habit

Sometimes I think talking to other women sailors about sailing is like talking to
other first time moms about being a mom. We all like to pretend we have it all
figured out when what we really need is a good friend who is just as much in the
dark as we are. Contrary to how I've set this up, this has nothing to do with my sailing skills (they're getting much better), it's my coping skills I'm writing about tonight.

My father in law noted how happy we were in all of our pictures and he was very
proud of us. I love hearing his comments. He's so supportive of us when sometimes
we feel alone in all of this. But it made me think, I rarely post anything negative (and
it really is infrequent). So, if you're not up for a little whining, skip it. But here's a
little part of cruising I've never shared.

What does it mean to be out of your comfort zone? It used to mean I took on a new project at work that I didn't know anything about. Or, I went to a play date with Jake where we didn't know anyone. Or anything else that was "new."

For the current me, it's watching my son jump off the boom while the boat is rocking
or underway. It's yelling at my son to shuffle his feet in the sand to avoid stingrays
because I DO know what it feels like to get stung by one. Before we left Mexico, it was wondering what the passage to the south pacific was going to be like...flat calm? Gale storms? Will the boat tip over? What do I do with Jake during all of this?
Now it's, where are we going? Will we get a grip on the language? Will we have enough money? Here's a doozy, will any of us get bit by a shark? Lately I have this very real fear of getting knocked out by a falling coconut (it's actually statistically more likely than getting bitten by a shark). Will Jake get his hand pinched by a crab? Or worse yet, broken off by a coconut crab (they're huge).

Will we have enough food until we get to the next major port? Am I teaching my child enough? Am I pushing him too much, he's only 5? Will my parents get sick or die while I' m gone? Will Andy's parents get sick or die while we're gone? Will we know about it?

This one will make you laugh. Will Jake get pulled off the dock by a crocodile?
Seriously, I worried about that in Mexico. (It actually happened in Puerto Vallarta to another child).

So I ask again, what does it mean to be out of your comfort zone? Is that a good
thing? I used to think so. I used to pride myself on stepping out of my comfort zone.
I even used that fact about me in interviews, and it worked. These days I think it means I'm on the fast track to an ucler. Or a heart attack (given my family's health history, I'm not too young).

For the most part, cruising is everything people imagine it is, sandy beaches,
palapas, warm weather, nice people, no jobs. But that other space you have to fill
your day with for me, is worry. I've only cracked the surface here with my
worries. The concerns are far greater than any I had on land. Yeah, the odds of
getting killed by a shark are far less than getting hit by a car. I know that. But I
don't own a car anymore. However, I do swim in the Pacific Ocean. And so does my
kid. Daily. On any given day, I'm 2 days from a hospital. No, I didn't mean to say 2
hours. I meant 2 days.

I don't expect sympathy (I'm sure I'm not getting any), and I'm not trying to be dramatic... I guess I just want everyone to know that we're still normal people with normal worries. Well, maybe not normal worries, but worries all the same. It's not all whale sharks and
margaritas (though thank goodness some of it is).

I promise not to whine too often, but it's been a tough week and I needed to vent. We might be leaving here in the next few days (of course we've been saying that for a while) and heading to Fakarava where hopefully we'll get the internet again and maybe a store...we're running low on the basics now. The three cruising boats here are trading things like milk and flour with each other so some of us will be forced to leave soon!

radio email processed by SailMail
for information see:

1 comment:

Nancy J. Jones said...

Dear's okay to worry. We're mom's and that's what we do. Really. I never used to be a worry wart until the mom title came along and even though I thought the fact of having a child would NEVER change me - it has altered me more than anything I've ever done in my life, times 11 (as Zada says, which to her is a big big number still). It isn't easy to be out in the middle of no-where and to know that your livelihood and your families depends on you and how you handle things (good, bad and bloody). There are many times when I think "what if Ethan has a heart attack while we're flying the spinnaker?" and when we're out in the big "O" I think the same as we're over powered and I wonder, if his safety gear failed, could I get this boat turned around, Zada in control and find him out there in the big sea? It's scary. It IS living outside a comfort zone and if someone says they don't have these fears, then I think they are carrying the man's chromosome. I say that because most men, I know, don't worry about any of this...Ethan stares at me and says "you actually THINK that?" and I say "how can you NOT think that?" girl, it's perfectly normal and I love you for your honesty and respect it and think you are a great mom and I am proud of you so, so much! xoxox -N

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.