Tuesday, March 03, 2009

gidget's revenge...

Okay, so the surfing...

This truly was the highlight of the trip, not only because it was generally just fun, but because learning to surf is something I've always wanted to do, but have always been too chicken to really get out and do it. Plus, it's nice to have fulfilled a New Year's resolution so early in the year, don't you think?
Samuel and I took our lesson together in a private lesson from Chris, this 50ish Hawaiian guy who runs a little surf school from this little thatched hut on the beach. Of course, it's in front of the Sheraton, so basically it's where all the haole tourists go to get their lessons so that they can feel like super cool surfers.
Hey, like me.
The lesson didn't start out that well.
Chris made us go feed the heron in the lagoon before even starting the lesson. He said it relaxed him before going out in the water and we sat on the bank for about ten minutes watching as he threw little pieces of bread to the fish so that the heron could quickly snap them up as they enjoyed what they thought were their treats. The whole thing made Samuel antsy.
"Can we go now?" he asked.
"Sssshhhhhhhhh," Chris shushed. "You have to be quiet or the heron won't eat."
Then, when we went out to scout out our spot, we had to wait another fifteen minutes for Chris while he talked with everyone on the beach.
It was very obvious to me that Sam and I were functioning at a different pace than this surfer.
But finally we were out there in the water, watching the waves and Chris began pushing us into them. I was shocked that I could catch them and stand up on my very first wave, which
felt humongous, but as you can see from the video below, was pretty much glorified whitewash. Still, I got up. And wave after wave gave me more confidence. It felt amazing.
After the first day, we went out twice again and while I noticed that it is so much harder to catch your own waves, it was tremendously fun and satisfying. I'm absolutely hooked.
But the thing that really struck me with that first day, was something that Chris said at the beginning of our lesson. He told me he usually didn't like taking moms and their kids together in a lesson because the moms have trouble paying attention to anything other than what their kid is doing. And he made me promise that I would let him take care of Samuel and I'd work on my own lesson.
"Sure, sure," I said, at the time anxious to get started.
But it was really harder than it looked. Having surfed before, Samuel was bored with the lesson and Chris started sending him out doing little surf tricks.
"You're sending him backwards?!" I squealed at one point.
"What's it to you?" he asked me, laughing. "I promise he won't drown. And you don't know this kid, anyway."
So I put my faith in this complete stranger and enjoyed my kid's crazy surf tricks from afar. And because of this, it let me absolutely enjoy myself. As a kid growing up in Southern California, I spent entire summers in the waves, body surfing and swimming and just playing, and because I was on my own that day, I felt that free again as I tried to catch waves and worked on my balance. I absolutely felt like myself. For those few hours, I wasn't a mom or wife or a daughter, friend, or consultant... I was just concentrating on the task at hand and it was incredibly freeing.

So, the video... Be kind. The wave is considerably smaller than it felt this first time in.


Becky said...

You are a totally rad surfer chick! You rock even MORE than before. How is this possible?

The award for the Coolest Mom definitely goes to you. Congrats!

fiona said...

I love that you can hear "yay Mummy" that is great. Yay Amy!

amy said...

LOL, thanks Becks! But did you see the whitewash?

amy said...

I love the "yay Mummy" part, too! ;)