Last week I discovered some potentially devastating news. Early stages of arthritis in both my knees. This effects me physically, emotionally, and mentally. I was at a loss for what to do.
Before I created my action plan, I spent two days convinced I would never run again, never jump again, and never enjoy fitness the same way again. I pondered what I would do for cardio, besides my stationary rowing machine.
I was very down on myself the day after my diagnosis, so I decided to try and cheer myself up by visiting the thrift store. Maybe I would be inspired by something I found there. And boy, was I ever inspired.
If you have followed me long enough, you know water is my element. Living in the Pacific Northwest, I don’t get to experience the water nearly as much as I’d like. For the majority of the year, it’s cold and rainy, and you absolutely HAVE to have a wetsuit to swim in the Puget Sound. I wear a wetsuit in most of the lakes, no matter what the season.
There are some minor SCUBA diving opportunities around the sound. Two years ago, I helped a guy clean his hull in Langley harbor. And last summer I saw multiple divers along Keystone ferry landing in Coupeville with their red diving flags. I also cleaned up after them in the restrooms after they showered and changed, but that’s besides the point. I also noticed divers along Rosario Beach a few times when I was a naturalist for Deception Pass.
But these are all self-serve diving opportunities, meaning the divers have ALL their own equipment. Most divers in the Pacific Northwest all have their own equipment. Until last year, I didn’t even have my own wetsuit.
But on Wednesday, Fate decided to change a few things for me. Needing a pick-me-up, I went to the thrift store. I don’t know what I was looking for. Maybe more anti-inflammatory diet cookbooks. Card games to play. Who knows? But you won’t believe what I found instead.
A Buoyancy Compensator Device, or BC (BCD). It’s the vest SCUBA divers wear to hold their tank. And like new diving fins. And they FIT. Like they were MADE for me.
Okay, so one of the main reasons I don’t HAVE this equipment is because they are expensive AF. A brand new BCDs cost upwards of $300-$600. A really cheap brand will still set you back $200. Fins aren’t exactly cheap either, especially when you combine it with a mask, booties, wetsuit, and gloves.
Want to know what I paid for this insane find? $19. For both the BC and the fins.
Now, at this point, I’m still not in the clear for diving, because I need tanks and a regulator. Oh, and I haven’t been able to find my SCUBA certification card in three years.
But then when I came home, my husband and I just happened to clean out my entire car (we have an unwanted occupant staying in the car, he is not welcome…). And guess what I found?
MY DIVING CERTIFICATION!!!
So, I am not usually into the hocus-pocus, timey-wimey, wibbly-wobbly stuff. But I really feel like the universe is trying to tell me something here, and I think it’s just the motivation I needed to get back to where I always feel I belong.
All I need now is a regulator, and a place to rent tanks. Now, the regulator is easily the most expensive piece of equipment, and the main reason people don’t get into this hobby/sport. A good regulator will cost upwards of $1000. Some don’t cost that much. The lower end of the spectrum is about $400-$500. I rather pay the money for something that keeps me breathing.
I need to save for a little while to afford the regulator, but I feel confident I will be exploring the sound like never before by summertime. The perfect activity to reduce impact on my knees, get me motivated to stay in shape, and bring me back to my element.
Thank you, Fate.