I was aimlessly scrolling when my finger stopped at a post that read, “What makes you feel free?” I thought to myself, “I’m going to answer this.” Without over-thinking or complicating the question I allowed the first thing to pop into my mind: swimming. I feel most free when I’m submerged in water. Swimming ignites an instant child-like pleasure where your adult concerns are tossed aside like a beach towel draped over a lawn chair.
The contrast of a sun-soaked body entering the cool refreshing waters makes for the perfect balance. Hot and cool mingle to make for the most comfortable temperature. It’s an instant sensory awakening – the rocks below both massaging and keeping you alert of each step taken. The bright shock of cool travelling from ankles, knees, belly, shoulders until full submersion. The spring jump out of the water followed by raised arms and a hair toss. Then finally re-entering to stretch out limb to limb. Whirling and circling my arms and legs I feel the light resistance and my body being lifted. Like a super hero I do what is impossible on land and float above the sand and rocks beneath. I hover playfully and with pride whisper to myself “Look at what I can do.” The buoyancy acts like magic lifting my body, mind and soul. What has weighed me down on land has now been subject to the rules and reign of the waters, and one by one is being lifted off. The unwavering waters sooth my concerns and make it easy to let go. Similar to crawling into my bed, it feels like a blanket being pulled over me – maybe even a liquid hug. I am certain that I’ll be held with care and gently rocked to and fro until every worry is calmed.
What makes me feel free? Simple: summer swimming. Submerging myself in cool waters shocks and activates my senses, shifting my attention to an expanse larger than my limited world. In the waters, I am free. This is freedom.