View Full Version : Scuba's a Journey...The wife that wouldn't quit

07-19-2007, 10:48
For me diving came easy. Born to be in the water and easily mastered the basic skills. However, this journey has been a whole different experience for my wife.
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First let me say that scuba is something my wife wanted to do and was looking forward to doing. She didn’t have any experience with snorkeling or diving related activities. She just wanted to see the undersea world. So there we were signing her and her son up for OW class. Everyone was excited and she was also a bit nervous. Nervous because swimming isn’t her strong point and she was really concerned about the swim test. The shop assured her it was no bid deal and she could use any stroke, just so long as she completed it.

To say she’s meticulous with her studies is an understatement. She read the book cover to cover highlighting and taking notes along the way. When her class came she aced everything and had the highest score in the class. With the academics out f the way it was time to hit the pool.

Still nervous she slipped into the water for the swim test and in a matter minutes she was done. She had passed the swim test. Confidence was high as the class moved into gear assembly and their first breaths in the underwater world.

This is the point where the good goes bad. That first day she couldn’t stay under water. She felt like she was not getting enough air to survive, panic would set in and she would have to come to the surface. Multiple tries turned into multiple failures. Anxiety and frustration were mounting as the instructor had to move forward with the rest of the class, leaving her to practice with a DM in the shallow end.

When the day was over she was ready to give up saying maybe diving is just not for her. We talked through it and she wasn’t going to give up.

The next day she was way behind the class but it did go better. She made some progress but at the end of the day the instructor said that she wasn’t ready for the lake. Along with the breathing issue she also had trouble with clearing her mask and breathing without the mask. During all this she also made a discovery…She has a fear of the water. Which probably explained a lot of her problems.

So over the course of the next few weeks she worked hard. Going to the pool with her snorkel and mask. Snorkel around, get used to breathing through your mouth, snorkel without a mask, remove and replace the mask, build confidence in the water…Soon she found herself back with the instructor for a private 1:1 lesson to go through all the skills and to see if she was ready for the lake. The instructor was blown away. He said this is not the same person that he tried to teach earlier and she easily passed the pool session.

The lake weekend came and her checkout dives went good. Was she perfect? No, but she got through it. Even though her fear of the water was compounded by the 3 foot visibility, she remained calm and ended the day as a certified diver.

She’s now got about 20 dives behind her and is working on her AOW. She absolutely loves scuba. She does prefer blue water diving as 3 foot viz in murky lakes isn’t her idea of fun. Even though she’s still not 100% confident in herself, she keeps working hard and enjoying her accomplishments.

If there is anyone thinking about getting certified that has some fear or anxiety about taking the plunge…or if you’ve tried and given up…I hope this gives you some comfort that you’re not alone, not everyone is a fish and some of us have to work harder to achieve our goals. Scuba is a rewarding journey with many places to see, many new friends to meet and many good memories of all the things you accomplished.

Also, a big thank you to all of the instructors out there that take the extra time to work with those students that need extra guidance. Your job must be very rewarding.

07-19-2007, 12:15
good story-
funny, i could never imagine "working" on scuba like a task that needs to be accomplished, but it sounds like her hard work really paid off. congratulations and thanks for sharing

07-19-2007, 12:52
I agree, a great story and one that should be read by anyone who feels they "can't" dive.

07-19-2007, 14:29
Great story and glad to hear she made it. I will have to let my wife read this one.

07-20-2007, 18:14
Your wife gets props from me!

07-20-2007, 18:21
I'm glad it worked out well. Anyone who wants to learn, really can, if the instructor is willing. I'm glad she had a good one who was honest and didn't rush her along.

07-22-2007, 17:21
Congratulations to your wife!!!!! Good for her for sticking it out and overcoming her fears!!!

02-06-2009, 11:23
Good for both of you.
Diving is so much more fulfilling when you have a partner to share it with.
I'm lucky that way...

02-06-2009, 12:36
Great story - and one I have to show the wife.

Like you, I am a water-baby (OK OK hippo for those that know me) and am comfortable in or under water. Even though she is comfortable in the water, my wife is NOT a water person so feels a little concerned and apprehensive about doing her certification classes even though it is on HER (not mine) list of things she wants to do!!

02-06-2009, 13:42
Great story. Thanks for sharing.
I am sure that her story will be inspirational for alot of people.
Being comfortable in the water is key to enjoying this sport.

02-06-2009, 15:40
glad she stuck with it and now gets to see much of the world others will miss!

02-07-2009, 12:21
My wife is also very nervous. From the time I signed fer up, to when she did her OW cert dives it took three years, and at least four instructors. Even now, when we start the season, she needs an hour essentially snorkeling on the surface breathing through her regs to 'get comfortable' for actual diving involving any significant depth. She does like diving now though. :smiley20:

02-07-2009, 13:01
Just remember to never ask anybody to go will beyond their comfort level. I would love for my wife to take up scuba, but I know that she would constantly be uncomfortable and unhappy. She would do it to please me, but nevery really enjoy it.