The Time The Pacific Ocean Tried to Swallow Me

The wave surged over my head. I inhaled quickly, but I was too late. The crest trampled over me, ignoring my existence. I succumbed to the Pacific Ocean’s wishes. As if I had a choice to disobey.

Even knowing the water was only a few feet deep didn’t stop the thought: I have to get air.

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The Pacific Ocean ignored my wishes

I’m okay, I thought. I’ll be just fine. Calm. My feet finally touched the sandy ocean floor. Up I pushed with all my might, maybe a bit over dramatically.

A wave coming up the sand, with the ocean in a deep blue in the background

Actually, I barely remember being under water. It was only a few seconds and I knew I needed to stand up quickly because I’d inhaled water. I jumped out of the water and took a shaky breath. Water poured out of my face while I coughed and sputtered.

She’s a Cruel Mistress

I took another breath. It felt as if there was water in my lungs and I couldn’t fill them. I kept coughing, I kept gulping in air, and I made my way back to the shore.

I’m a good swimmer and I kind of thought I was going to have a problem getting to the surface for a few seconds. My lungs were still struggling when I got out of the water.

from the shore, watching a wave break on the Pacific Ocean

Ixtapa’s beautiful waves.

That was so stupid, I thought. Slowly, my breathing was easier. One lung felt sore for part of the day. I Panicked inside my head that I’d develop pneumonia or a collapsed lung but slowly, the soreness subsided.

Though I returned to the ocean after this, I stayed away from the big waves. The oceans of the world (those I know and those I haven’t yet met) still have my heart.

This incident occurred on our road trip to Ixtapa, Guerrero, Mexico. While I’ve had a few incidents before, I’ll forever love the ocean. Do you prefer mountains or oceans? Or something in between?


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