Today during a call with my mom, I spent the majority of the time talking about surfing victories during my Costa Rica trip with Pivot Journeys. I was hired by Pivot Journeys to be a coach for one of their Costa Rica retreats.
Over the years, my mom has heard a lot of stories about my surfing adventures. To be honest, she’s heard a lot about my surfing failures. In the past 5 years, I worked tirelessly on my “pop.” A pop-up is the surfing term for the movement to go from laying down to standing. I’ve been obsessed with the pop-up. Even my mom knows about it because I demonstrated it to her not once but millions of times.
I could do the pop in my sleep, but when I got into the water something happened to me. I couldn’t do it.
So I continued taking class after class. Every failure was a learning opportunity, I was constantly learning about my fears, making friends with the ocean, and constantly discovering new ways of being in the water. Moment to moment, I was more in touch with the present than ever before.
While every beginner who joined me for classes in New York, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica always did better than me, I have learned truly to accept myself. I learned to give myself as much time as I needed.
This time something happened. After failing class after class this time in Costa Rica I FINALLY popped and rode a wave!
Surfing is the hardest thing I have done in my life. And I’ve done a couple of extreme things. I moved to the US on my own, I started my own business during a recession, I traveled alone in India, and am currently starting the Slow Down Movement in the busiest city in the world. Still, surfing was freaking hard!
My surfing instructor would ask “Are you having fun?” The truth is, I wasn’t. It was hard work.
Hard work that paid off after I did my first pop. I felt like I had crossed the threshold and got in touch with the hero inside me, I was free of something. I still have a lot of fear but this time, I’m becoming friends with my fear.
Failure is a way to success and hard work is necessary. There is no way around it. I will continue learning how to surf because now it is fun, finally!
My mom was so thrilled that I finally did it. We laughed because I said the only thing I care about right now is how to go back to surfing. It is a true statement that life only begins after 40!
I can not wait to turn 40 in July.
Photo credit@Katarina Kojic for HelloGorgeous.nyc