It may not look it but this picture shows many firsts and it had to be documented.
A first time for my wetsuit, a Christmas present from my husband.
A first time for my brand new surfboard, an advanced birthday present from my husband. Along with a new leash and booties.
A first time for me and my husband to be surfing together at the same time in the water. We had to take turns before in terms of boards and instructors.
A first time for me to go surfing this year.
And lastly, a first time for me to be surfing in the waters of Sardegna.
And what better place to do it but in a secret spot close to our home. A mere 20-30 minutes away drive, in the very same town we live in.
I started surfing in 2008, upon the urging of a classmate from my masters class in the university. She said it was going to be better than psychotherapy and indeed it was.
I went about three or four times with them to Baler, Aurora and San Juan, La Union, and twice in Daet, Camarines Norte for surfing until I could not go anymore because I was pregnant.
After that, it was only sporadic surfing with maybe two or three times a year, that I never progressed beyond beginner. I was surfing in Monaliza Point with Anthony Valdez once and made the mistake of following another surfer in the wrong direction in going back to the line up. I was swallowed by waves upon waves into what I could only describe as like being inside a washing machine. I was terrified after and I have not been to Monaliza Point since.
I was not terrified for myself. When you have a child, you stop being worried about yourself and start being worried about what your child will do if you die. I did not want to die yet for the sake of my young child. I became very cautious then. I never went alone in the water and never went without a local instructor who is knowledgeable about the depths, hidden rocks, and the currents.
This time in Sardegna, I went without an instructor and there were only two of us in the water. It was indeed a secret spot. The waves were beginner-friendly so I was not afraid. I also had my husband.
I was paddling on my brand new board, watching the waves come up and down in front of me. It felt good to be in the water again even if it was cold. I was happy. It was more than a year since I have last been surfing so I had to find my balance again. I had to get to know my new baby – a white Blanks board, shipped all the way from Spain. Together, we managed to catch two waves. That was good enough.
The rest of the time in the water I was just improving my paddling and balancing skills. I always need more work on stamina but I am always careful to not strain my muscles too much that I would not be able to walk or take my clothes off of me. I like to surf but I don’t like taking the rigours of it with me out of the water.
It was I who brought my husband surfing with me to La Union while we were waiting for the Australian visas last year, and since then, he has been addicted. He is now so much more into it than me. I’m happy that now he and I can go surfing together and I do not have to be afraid. Ahead of us are plans of more surf trips and I am sure it is always going to be fun.