Swimming With the Sharks (Sort of…)

IMG_2711#32 For four mornings while down in The Sunshine State a couple of weeks ago, this was the view in the morning.

One morning, I braved the cool ocean water and enjoyed a beautiful swim out into the greatness. It was unlike most of my beach experiences. There were very few people and when you looked out, the only thing you could see was water. And the odd ship. It was true heaven.

So during my leisurely swim, I floated on my back and reveled in the moment of pure bliss and wished it could last forever. Then something interrupted my zen time. A rogue thought shoved its way into my quiet mind: I’m swimming in the Atlantic Ocean. And there are sharks in the ocean. It’s interesting how thoughts of sharks can alarm a person.

I tried to be logical. I reminded myself that people swim in the ocean off the coast of Florida all the time and sharks, I’m sure, never come close. But completely irrational fears defy such logic in these situations and I found myself swimming for the shore almost as if I was being chased by some blood thirsty shark.

When I arrived on land, I laughed at myself for being so silly and my father and his girlfriend shared a laugh at my expense as well. I learned a lesson that day: Do not think of sharks when you’re enjoying a lovely swim in the ocean.

THEN…fast forward a week or so. My father and his girlfriend were out swimming in the ocean as they frequently do and they were chased into shore by an actual shark. For real! Apparently, sharks do come around the Florida coast.

Then I googled it. According to an NBC article, Florida led world with 23 shark attacks in 2013. So glad I didn’t look this up before my trip south.

Guess my irrational fear isn’t quite as irrational as I thought. And yet I will still swim in the ocean again, but next time I will check on the shark sightings first and then force myself to think only of dolphins and goldfish during my zen floating time.


Image credit: artenot / 123RF Stock Photo


About Erin Kuhns

Stepping out of the woods and out of my comfort zone. One year...one hundred new things to ensure I don't spend another year sitting in the armchair of life.
This entry was posted in Challenge, Travel, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Swimming With the Sharks (Sort of…)

  1. Donna says:

    First time I went to Florida the Jaws movie had just been released. Think I wanted to go for a swim in the ocean? Think again! I do remember walking along the beach, though, and picking up shark’s teeth along the way! :o)

  2. Bev says:

    Are you kidding? took me years after that movie to not panic while in the water… minnows could scare the bejeezus out of me… i can only imagine my face when i turned to your father after he had called out “Shark” (of course thought he was joking) and simultaneously saw the fin about 30 feet behind him. Yikes! Turned out to be 2 interesting days… apparently they come closer to shore when the waters are calm. We also saw manta-ray… one flew right out of the water.. huge thing it was. They’re harmless though. The waters got a bit more active and we have ventured back in, but admittedly don’t go as far out as we might have… innocence a bit broken

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