I had an exciting idea.
An interesting life!
A life that I crafted to fit my very own self, not a slot that I had to try to squeeze my unique shape into...
So I bought a little rowboat.
I didn't ask around much, I didn't learn about the weather, I didn't research different kinds of boats, I didn't even know how to row.
I just knew I wanted to paddle in the water.
Oh, I got into the water ok. I loved it. Every day, waking up with the whole day stretching in front of me, offering nothing but time for me to work on what I had set in front of me to do.
But the boat had leaks I hadn't known about, and rowing was much more work than I had thought.
I still tried, tried, tried.
Bailing, rowing, bailing, rowing, bailing, rowing...
While I was busy bailing and rowing several big storms were gathering themselves.
I survived the first three or four. Swamped, but I managed to get the boat upright and climb back in.
The last one sank my boat. I managed, after days and weeks of swimming, to get to shore.
It was weeks later that I was able to sit up, look around, and decide what to do.
I decided to get another boat.
Pretty nervous about it all, I set off. This time I had a little sailboat. I learned gradually to navigate some winds and waves. How to trim the sails in, how to batten hatches, how to steer into the wind and wait out the storms.
But still, the weather was too much for my little boat, and she suffererd some big dammage. I felt beaten down and discouraged, but I had already commited myself to a life on the sea. Just had to figure out how to make it work.
I got a new boat, a little bigger, and with a crew.
The boat is a modest sailboat. Strong enough to sail in the big ocean, but still very vulnerable to waves and weather. To keep her afloat it takes a great amount of skill, and many times I can't rest or the boat might be swamped again. But my crew and I are learning to work well together, and in spite of having no real survival suits, we continue to steer this little boat right into the wind. It is exhilerating, exhausting, and our survival has given a lot of confidence. Wheeeeeee!!!!!
I envision a slightly bigger boat next, still modest, no monster cruiser; I still want to feel every nuance of the wind and waves. But more stable, more secure, and I want it to be fully outfitted with survival suits.
That's what I want now.