0700. I went surfing this morning. 7/11 Beach in Ship Bottom on Long Beach Island, NJ. The swell was small but glassy. The water was perfect; maybe 70. I went out and then two other older guys on longboards joined me.
I paddled in and caught the first wave I took. Got up and turned left, the wave closed out and I rode the white water in to the beach. It felt great. I paddled out and caught another and then another and then I was done. Couldn’t catch anymore. To be honest, the swell dropped a bit and the wait between waves was longer than I can tolerate so I went inside and played in the smaller waves. The thing is I had no more strength left. Energy yes, strength and endurance, no.
So here I am. A new crossroads. I’m 65. Do I want to get fit enough to keep surfing? I mean really surfing. Spending at least an hour or two paddling into waves. I am NOT fit enough now. The option is to stop surfing and just use my paddleboard so I am standing on a board on the water. It’s not the same. The feeling I get when the wave takes over is indescribable. Only a surfer gets that. It is the most beautiful experience there is for me on the planet. I guess I just answered my own question.
I am going to keep losing weight and commit to the gym two times a week. I can do that. I have to do that.
In another 5 years or so my balance will go. I will be even more fragile. I love the ocean. I have a surfboard tattooed on my forearm for HP’s sake. I can not give in to the momentum killer this decade is offering me. I can not give in.
I’m going straight across the intersection. I’m not giving up. “Old” is such a powwerful concept. It attacks me from all directions. Failing health. A drop in energy. The risk of injury increasing. The pressure of others looking at me like I’m crazy. “Why do you keep doing that?”
Because I have to.
I’m not giving up the connection I get with the universe when the wave picks me up. That is the closest I get to my god. That beautiful power way greater than me. It humbles me. It exhilatates me. Charges my entire being. My spirit. Yes, charges my spirit.
No turn at this crossroad.