I was born in Aberdeen and have lived in Nelson, New Zealand, Galway, Ireland and now North Berwick, Scotland. The draw to the sea is strong. I didn’t realise it then but I have a real need to be near the the ocean.
I began dipping my toes in the cold water and realised when doing this the “gasp” of the cold on my feet took me away from anything else in my head. So when I moved here to East Lothian I knew I wanted to try and swim, regularly in the sea to have the same, stronger all over sensation.
Do I wear a wetsuit? No… You must be mad! I hear this all the time and maybe I am but the past 12 months I have swam in a swimsuit only weekly and can tell you that you do become more accustomed to the cold on the skin. You also become smart….Hot water bottle, thick socks, easy to get on clothes and a hot drink.
But when I get into the water I am taken away. Away from the busy and endless chatter of the mind, whether just whats for tea, or what am I doing with my life. There is nothing else you can think of other than simple breathing.
I won’t lie, I do swear a bit as I first walk into the water and my yoga breathing is very helpful as I feel that first hit of cold all over me. But there is then a space, a quiet peace. A great wonderful sea swimming friend told me to try each time to float in a star shape on my back, look to the sky and take 10 long deep breaths. I now do this every swim and it is my secret peace. By the 10th breath I fell totally calm and almost out of body and mind.
Leaving the water I get back into my clothes and in winter hug a hot bottle and warm drink. My entire body tingles and I feel completely alive.
I cannot recommend highly enough trying this….better still, call me and I’ll come with you. xxx