Last summer in Cebu City, I had to face one of my biggest fears– the ocean. And so, I took it as a challenge– a quest of some sort– to conquer the said fear.
It wasn’t entirely the fear of drowning, but more of the fear of wanting to drown that scared me. I remember just floating in the water, GoPro in hand, safely bobbing up and down in the waters in my safety vest. Inappropriately, I suddenly remember Esther Green and her mission to kill herself while I was peacefully floating. Oddly enough, I spent my last semester in college deciphering Sylvia Plath’s fictional self, that it has somehow permeated my core. But saying this discounts the fact that I have had suicidal thoughts way before I wrote my thesis on The Bell Jar. I was depressed. To this day, I still think I am (but that’s another story).
On one of my three nights in Moalboal, I decided to sit before the ocean. Thoughts of the future had kept me preoccupied during the time. I was scared of not finding a job, falling short of everyone’s expectations, but ultimately, I was most scared of failing at life. I cried. And the ocean was there to comfort me as its tide ebbed and flowed. Suddenly, I wasn’t scared anymore. I was thankful.
I went back to our villa that night surprisingly reciting Esther’s internal monologue: I am. I am. I am.
I smiled, and thought, “The quest has just begun.”