By: Dwayne Parton

I Almost Missed Out

I’ve got a condition. Pretty sure I’ve known about it for a while but it wasn’t until today that I knew the words to describe it. Rewind…

Two days ago, I went to Lake Santeetlah for the first time to go for a boat ride, wakeboard, and tube. My friend, Lewis, has a really nice boat. I had never wakeboarded before and it’s definitely been on my bucket list since high school.

So Lewis goes first. He shows us just how easy it is. He pops up first try, does a few jumps, rides until he’s tired and then gracefully sinks when he lets go. Easy peasy. I nominated Stephen to try first. I wasn’t scared but for whatever reason I was thoroughly embarrassed. Stephen tried a few times but his arms were hurting him so he came in. Let’s face it he’s a weeny. I hope he reads this ;) Anyhow, like I said, I was thoroughly embarrassed. Why? I have no idea. I was actually shaking as I put the board on and plopped into the water, though they may not have noticed.

You see, I love to learn. I learn all kinds of things just for the sake of it. For instance, I can throw a lasso, play the penny whistle, and complete the rubix’s cube. Not real good, but that’s not the point. The thing is, I almost always learn how to do something in privacy until I am good enough to not be too embarrassed.

This was my first time wakeboarding, and there I was on the verge of not going at all because I was a little embarrassed. Well, a lot embarrassed. Luckily, there is no way Stephen would have let me not go.

It took a few failures for my nerves to finally settle down and for me to actually start having fun. After being dragged many feet through the water I finally figured out how to get up. Once I was standing, it was even more fun than I had imagined. It was like a happy combination of skateboarding and snowboarding. Amazing!!!

And now back to the point. I’m not sure I’ve ever really recognized my irrational sense of embarrassment to try something new in front of people. I’ve always known that I hate participating in things that I am not at least decent at but I had never found the words to describe it. And the truth of the matter is that I take myself way too seriously.

I don’t know that there is anything wrong with that, but it does steal joy and in my case it prohibits me from learning new things. And I know that I’ve missed out for that exact reason. That’s why I hate dancing, parties, and anything that involves “letting go”. Now, I don’t think I’ll ever like those things but the point has been made.

That lake trip was so much fun. Below is a video of some crashes Stephen recorded. My favorite part is his laugh.

I love that out of control, skipping through the water feeling. And for your entertainment, I found some amazing barefoot crashes. Maybe, I’ll try this next. I have wimpy feet and that could be a problem.