After recently discussing how I’ve been running out of things to say in my blog, a friend suggested talking about any of my vacations to exotic or interesting places. Ironically, the last time I took any sort of exotic trip was to where I actually met this friend, that being Grand Cayman in February of 2016. Sadly, I haven’t travelled since because of how challenging it’s been with my health.
Nevertheless, there is one thing I truly miss from all those exotic vacations I used to take with such regularity in my life and that’s seeing the brightly lit clear blue ocean that I always experienced when in the Caribbean. By way of cruise or a land-based resort, every year for more than a decade, I’d take a one to two-week vacation somewhere in the Caribbean. And one thing I always made sure to do whenever I was on one of those getaways was to go snorkeling, and usually a few times at that.
I love snorkeling and wish I could somehow beam myself onto a Caribbean island whenever I want, solely to do this activity at least once a week. Gliding across the top of the ocean and exploring what’s underneath was always so peaceful for me. Even with all my pain, the buoyancy of the salt waters and the warmth of them as well would always support and soothe me, all while I found a wonderful way to draw closer to another aspect of God.
Through my many snorkeling adventures, I’ve swam next to huge sea turtles, been within arm’s length of the largest and most colorful lobsters you could ever imagine, held starfish in my hands, stood still as schools of vibrant fish surrounded me, fed and petted stingrays, explored shipwrecks and other treasures left on the seafloor, weaved my way through complex coral reefs, been face to face with barracuda, touched many shiny humongous fish, and plenty more.
In the silence of the depths of the ocean, stress just seems to melt away for me. Quite often I’ll even take a long deep breath and swim down as far as I can where I pretend that I’m part of all the ocean life somehow. I have definitely had some strong spiritual experiences doing so and am very grateful for them.
While I’m told that scuba diving is far better for this type of exploration, I unfortunately can’t equalize the pressure within my ears and suffer too much pain the deeper I dive, so I resort to doing what I can do, which is snorkeling and diving down to about 10 to 15 feet at the most. And honestly, I’m fine with that, as I’ve fully enjoyed all my experiences every single time I’ve done this activity throughout my life and probably would do it on a daily basis if I lived in the Caribbean.
I find the ocean to be extremely healing for me, mind, body, and soul, and know that someday I’d like to be living far closer to one of its shores than I do now. I keep saying I’m going to take a trip again to the Caribbean soon, mostly because I miss those bright blue waters and exploring their depths, but I still haven’t and have gone three years now without doing my most favorite activity in the world. I’m sure a day will come again though where I’ll be snorkeling once more, but for now, I’m at least thankful that I have such vivid memories of doing this activity in plenty of years past.
Regardless, I still like to take a few moments from time to time to close my eyes and visualize myself feeling supported by something so much larger than I. As it’s in each of those moments, where I’m brought back to a place and time that I surely have felt much peace and joy and most definitely the presence of God…
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson