buoyant

Fat floats. That’s just how it is. I have permanent life preservers strapped to my chest. Then why, oh why, do i have such a fear of water???

When i was young, i learned to swim in the pool at our condo complex in the Marina Del Rey. I learned with empty milk jugs. While holding on to the empty jugs, i learned to kick my way around the shallow end of that pool. I then graduated to arm floaties.

This big bird bikini is one of the last bathing suits i ever owned. By the time i attended summer camp in 1988, i had acquired a substantial fear of bathing suits and…

Wait. I think i need to back up.

Around the age of 7, i was in the backseat of a Fiat Brava Sedan…

(Cute. Boxy.)

…when we got rear-ended at the peak of the Oak Island bridge.

My seven year old mind was severely scarred… and obviously did not comprehend the fact that the depth of the North Carolina intercoastal waterway is little more than that of a diving pool. Nor did i understand the buoyancy of a Fiat. Still, i felt the possibility of careening over the edge meant certain death in the bottom on the deep blue sea. Ever since then, i have experienced random nightmares involving water complications. Most of them involve my brother and the realization that he can not swim or hold his breathe. It frequently seems to be a ME or HIM type of senario.

Yesterday’s dream was different. I had to cross a body of water that offered no better solution than a zipline.

My nightmare included a simlar set-up, but across a greater distance. For the record, i think this is BAT SHIT CRAZY (and i don’t know much about the excrement of winged rodents, but i do know it’s not cool). Plus, i’m fairly certain my weight could level out that little Ewok hut at the bottom of that rope. In my dream world of plummeting horrors, there was a significant portion of the journey that would actually drag you UNDER the water. OH!… and i’m PREGNANT. No, not just pregnant. I’M IN LABOR.

When i reach the oppsite side of the body of water, i’m keeping afloat on top of a flat surface.

Yep. Like that. But minus the DiCaprio.

SOMEONE was there, but i’m fairly certainly it wasn’t someone i’d want to makeout with.

By that point, i had already given birth to a tiny little person. This tiny person was very slippery as i tried to keep hold of him. He was wiggly. I decided it was better to lay him down on a nearby ledge… that happened to be about a foot under water. I leave the baby there, swim away, and then someone says something along the lines of “Hey, didn’t you have a baby???” At that point i look back to see a small plastic babydoll laying on that ledge. The horror of the situation begins to settled in. That’s my baby. I left him underwater. He’s not moving. I quickly push through the water in a panic, but, by the time i pick him up, i can feel that the hollow plastic body is already full of water. I’m too late. I turn him over, water pours out of his mouth and nose, and i scream. All i could think was “I killed him. I killed the only thing that loved me.” I screamed the scream to end all screams… that soon turned into a snore to end all snores. That’s when i woke up.

I spent the next hour in bed feeling disturbed, as i’m sure you do now. You’re welcome.

(Please note: Disturbing emotions will substantially lessen if you scroll back up for a second look at that pic of me and Ms. Jackson)

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