Today was our second day on our Padi course. First we had to go over and review a test we had completed the night before. Luckily we passed with only errors 😀 from there we were shown how to kit up our BCD’S ( buoyancy control devices ) onto oxygen tanks and were ready to get in the ocean.
our first test was shallow water diving drills. After a quick demo we all jumped from the dock in front of our dive school into water about 2/3 meters deep. After grouping on the surface we had to deflate our BCD”S slowly descend to the ocean bed.
The first few breaths under water for me were a mad mix of excitement and fear. I could feel my heart rate quickening and a slight sense of claustrophobia kicking in. Id spent the last month at a retreat learning to breath through my nose during my yoga practice and the instinct to do so slipped in now and again. As soon as I did although my nose was inclosed within my mask i sucked in a few drops of ocean water and quickly began to cough. This only added to my panic as I had no idea at this stage what to do.
Slowly our dive instructor calmed my breathing down and we had to start our first drills. Slowly we learned how to remove our regulator from our mouth and replace it. Then to use the secondary emergency regulator. These tasks I found fine as I could easily see and understand what to do. From there we had to fill our masks with water and learn how to clear the water trapped within them. This didn’t go so well for me and I panicked, a lot!!
With my nose enclosed within the mask as soon as I let it fill with water it felt as if my nose was breathing in all the ocean water. I began to cough and choke and couldn’t regain my breathing through the regulator. I panicked and nearly used off the ocean floor for the surface above. Some how though I tilted my head back and breathed hard through my nose to push the water out from my mask. With all the water removed I could see clearly and I began to calm and breath some what normally.
After a few ore tasks the last we had to perform was to remove our masks and swim for 60 seconds under water with our eyes open, we then had to refit our masks and clear the water. Removing the mask and swimming under water was no problem but once again re fitting the mask and feeling water pushed up my nose by my air bubbles really panicked me. I tried to push to the surface out of instant but my dive instructor clasped my hands around my mask and insisted I continue. Some how I refitted the mask onto my face and cleared the water. For maybe a minute or more then my breath was panicked and rushed. I had to close my eyes to try and calm my breathing. After the others and done the same task we all surfaced and broke for a lunch break. Jac did amazing at the skills and took naturally to them, her calm helped me steady my nerves over lunch. A slight bit of panic had set in at the thought of being 18 meters under water and the same panic coming over me but I had to try.
After we had ate lunch we headed back. I explained my apprehension I had to my dive instructor and simple asked if we could go slowly through the open water tests. We then went out on the boat to a dive spot just along the coast. When I got in the water at first a feeling of nausea came over me. I slightly began to panic at the thought of throwing up in my regulator under water. I simply put my mouth piece in and stuck my head under water to look at the ocean floor beneath. Slowly my breath claimed and my stomach settled. We gathered in our group and descended to 12 meters. Here we performed a few more skills. We had to remove our mouth piece and show we could replace it. We then once again had to fill our masks with water and clear them. Doing this I did slightly panic but I now knew and understood how to recover. We then had to remove our weight belts and then our full BCD’s and tank then refit them. There were a few other skills to perform but right now I cant remember them.
After doing this we headed on for our first full open water dive. Without the pressure of performing skills new to us and simply scuba diving it all became very natural to myself and Jac. We swam past coral reefs and ship wrecks and saw more ocean life then I could ever hope to name. WE completed that dive then did another at a site further up, It was great and left us both with a taste for more.
Tomorrow we complete our course with a deeper dive and a final test, We cant wait!!