facing fears- one breath at a time

[Part 1]

There are moments in your life where you ask yourself- why am I doing this?  It was 5:35pm and I was planning on leaving my home at 5:30pm. I thought to myself, it’s not too late now. I could just call my friends and let them know that I couldn’t make it. Even though my bags were packed, I had a throbbing headache and this was my last opportunity to back out. Every inch of my brain was telling me to not go. Do the smart thing and stay home. I had to keep telling myself that I was not a quitter, even though that’s all I could think about doing.

There are different levels of fear. And honestly, I don’t think I’ve been so scared to do something as I was that weekend. Tell me to move to a country halfway around the world that you’ve never been to, run a half-marathon after completing 3 days of training teachers in Cambodia, or teach a classroom of  32 middle school students in a NYC public schools at the age of 22 and I wouldn’t think twice about it. Tell me to dive deep into the ocean and depend on a tank of air for 50 minutes and my brain goes into panic mode.

I managed to get myself out of my home and to the location of where we would depart for our scuba diving trip. As I was on the van to Tioman, Malaysia, there was no turning back. (Well technically I could have gotten out at the border at Woodlands and taken a taxi back home, but at this point, I might as well go to Malaysia.) Worst case scenario would be to get there and not dive. Luckily, I had friends by my side that kept encouraging me as they could see the anxiety and fear written all over my face.

After a very long drive to Malaysia, we took a two and half hour ferry ride to Tioman and made it to our island “resort” around 2:30am. We had to wake up around 6:30am for breakfast and our first dive. I think I slept, but I kept waking up every hour or so to check my watch. I woke up before my alarm went off and felt that nervous pit in my stomach. It wasn’t the nervous, but excited feeling before a first date, or the adrenaline, but nervous feeling before an important race. It was the oh crap, I’m really doing this feeling.

To be continued….



future world exhibit: where art meets science

There are always a few worthwhile exhibits to see at the Arts & Science museum.  Checking out the future world exhibit with my bestie from NY made this exhibit even more memorable in my mind. We went on a Sunday afternoon, which meant crowds and a lot of kids. However, we still had fun and managed to get some good shots in the Instagram-worthy room of lights. We made sure to reserve tickets beforehand because on the Saturday before, we were unable to go inside because it was fully booked.

This was definitely a kid friendly exhibit, so families with young kids should definitely go. All the exhibits were very interactive. I resisted the temptation to go down the slide, because I think it was meant for kids. However, I did go inside the area with the lit up bouncy balls and played around for a minute or so. I would recommend that if you are going without kids, probably the week night would be less crowded.

My final tip, be patient and wait for the lights to change. Make sure to go through the room of lights slowly. It’s a one-way exhibit.

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