a leap of faith

slice of life 2014

“Please jump in with us Ms. Kim, ” the two girls from my class asked me. As the sun in Indonesia was getting hotter, I knew that getting into the water was unavoidable. From the dock, it didn’t look like it was too high up. The students were jumping from the low-dock into the water. We had cleared a mini-run way on the dock for them. In groups of 2 to 3 they were jumping off into the salty ocean water. The fearless students did 360s, back flops (by accident), splits in the air, and some held their nose.

I got onto the line with my two students next to me. It was finally our turn, and I stood in the middle, sandwiched with my fifth grade girls next to me. The teacher cued us to get ready and I started to run. As I quickly approached the edge of the dock, I looked down. My first mistake. The water looked way further down then the view from the side. As I felt an unexpected moment of panic my two students jumped in without hesitation. They were already in the water, and then I jumped right after. I felt like the coyote that chases after the roadrunner and then realizes mid air that it’s a long way down. As I hit the water, the fear increased as I felt the impact and went straight down and took in a good amount of water. I quickly pushed my way up to the surface and realized my jelly sandals I wore had both slipped off my feet.

“My sandals are gone!!!” I yelled out loud. My principal, who was wading in the water, supervising and swimming, came over quickly.

“Did you loose one of them?” He asked.

“I lost both of them. They slipped off. They are orange and only five dollars. It’s ok.” I replied. Then, he dove underneath the water and came up with 1 orange jelly. Then he dove back in and found the second one.  Emergency avoided. I now had both slippers in my hand as I waded in the water. My nose and throat stinging from the salty ocean water I consumed from my jump, I pulled my wet and heavier body up onto the ladders at the side of the dock.

“That was so much fun! Let’s jump again Ms. Kim, ” my students urged afterwards. I hesitantly got on line again, this time, a bit smarter and left my water shoes on the dock.

10 thoughts on “a leap of faith

  1. Dana says:

    I really enjoyed how you told this story…both the external and internal parts! Especially love the part about losing your shoes and how they were retrieved! Too funny! Thank you for sharing this slice and for jumping in!!!

  2. bennisbuzz says:

    Sometimes you just have to “cut loose” and do it! Good for you! You are now part of their childhood memories by being brave. This also is a good writing topic to file away for the future when you write to model for your students. D 🙂

  3. writekimwrite says:

    “I felt like the coyote that chases after the roadrunner and then realizes mid air that it’s a long way down.”. This expresses that moment so well. I am glad you jumped in and created such a vivid memory. Hurrah for your diving principal and saved shoes, too.

  4. Stacey Shubitz says:

    I loved this slice because it made me feel like I’m not alone with my trepidation about jumping into the water. At almost-40, I’m not as fearless as I was when I was a teenager. (Injuries from a MVA have something to do with it!) Maybe it isn’t just me… maybe it’s an adult thing.

    Glad the orange jellies stayed dockside when you jumped in again.

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