I gasped for air as the crashing waves hit me one after another. I looked around only to see the wide expanse of the ocean blue around me. Another wave hit me as I struggled to stay above air. I was running out of options as I found no escape from the water grave around me, there was nothing to hold onto, nothing to steady myself on, no hope of anything saving me. 

The water began to pull me down, as if beckoning me down deeper into its clutches. I was so tired of struggling, so tired of fighting these giants masked as waves. As the water pulled me below the surface, the eerie quiet of the deep blue brought a sort of empty comfort. Gone was the rush of the pounding waves, gone even was the sound of my struggling breath that I had gasped time and time again as if it was my last.

Maybe it had been my last, I thought, as I felt the water sink me deeper below the surface.  With my eyes closed, the darkness that fell upon me deep below the surface felt final. Like it was the end, darkness inviting me into the finality of fighting. My lungs began to restrict as my body used what was left of the one last breath I had breathed, seemingly a lifetime ago, on the surface. But even as my lungs screamed, I stilled in that deep blue water, eyes shut, limbs heavy and mind at rest. ‘Over’ seemed good as done. 

But then my eyes snapped open, almost as if a reflex of my body. The ocean depths were blurry as my vision didn’t seem quite right underwater. But I realized it wasn’t dark below the surface. Yes, below it was dark, but above me, oh, the marvelous light that reflected into the water, through a million different colors. It was beautiful and astonishing and in and of itself inviting you to draw near to it. 

I looked down at the darkness I was succumbing to and I realized the light was where I wanted to be. I wasn’t ready to call it quits, I wasn’t ready to let it be the end. I wanted to be in the light and I wanted to be near the light. With an energy I didn’t knew existed, I kicked up towards the surface. Harder and harder I swam as I saw the light get closer. Looking at it warmed the inside of my soul, like it was something I’ve never experienced before. I couldn’t help but wonder if there wasn’t something above the surface that was beyond the outside light that I thought I knew. I kicked up harder and broke the surface.

With a gasp of air like a newborn being brought into the world for the first time, I breathed my first breath. The air never felt so good to my body and I realized this was where I was made to be, a person of the air and light. I looked around and over the waves that tried to threaten me again. I looked past them, no longer scared by their intimidation tactics. I then saw the boat I had left ages ago, having left it capsized and sinking itself. 

With all the strength I could muster, I swam as hard as I could to the boat. Reaching out for it and grasping onto its edge felt like finding home once again, a stabilizing force that I could hold onto. I looked at the hull and took a plunge below to look at how it had capsized. After seeing how the mast had remained intact, I swam and pushed with all my might to persuade the boat to flip right side up. It took a few tries until I felt the boat start moving and continue to push until momentum pulled it back up, like a buoy in the water. While still filled with water, it remained floating right side up and I finally pulled myself into the boat. 

After laying there in the pool of water, I got up and began to bail out my boat. I knew North was my direction and North was where I going to go, navigating it based off of the sun was easy enough. Turning to go back seemed enticing but I had no option. I had chosen to leave, had already said my goodbyes, and there was no way of going back. I had enough to keep going forward, and so that was what I was going to do. North had land nearby, that I knew. North promised uncharted territory as well, something I was no longer as prepared for as I had been, having lost most of what I brought with me in storm. But it didn’t matter anyway—I couldn’t go this far North if I was bringing those heavy things with me. Where I was going didn’t have room for them.

Now, my boat was lighter and my drive resolute. I had purpose of where I was going and nothing was going to stop me. Not anymore. With determination set upon me, I looked North. North was destiny and North was unknown. But there was nothing left to do but sail towards it. And to fight the waves that tried to battle me along the way. Because there was no way I was giving up on my fight. Not this time. And not any time. 

So I set sail into my tomorrow, into what I knew awaited me on the other side of this great adventure.  

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