A vast ocean, waves foaming white at their crests, rainbow-coloured kitesurfers hurled by strong winds across the blue sky — the thrill of speed, power, and independence. Carving the ultramarine wave tops until the invisible barrier of momentum and resistance falls behind, they jump and soar in a delirium of adrenalin and salt spray. Airborne! The crystalline ocean recedes below in a slow-motion curtain of turquoise, and the kitesurfer arcs in a dimension beyond gravity. An indescribable moment of freedom that is both unique and personal.
This is kitesurfing. It is my kind of sport in my natural element. It represents what I love the most — the ocean, excitement, and beauty. I know that I will be ecstatic to race fast on the board under the vibrant kite, and to manage the dynamic power of the cables. I long for the feel of the wind and the taste of the sea salt on my lips. I want this incredible unity with the water and sky. Kitesurfing was love at first sight for me. We sat swaying on the boat, finishing our last checkups before diving. I turned my head and saw a bright red kite, dancing in a dazzling blue sky. Then I saw a slender girl, deftly controlling the fabric chute. She swept swiftly past.
“Running on the waves!” I thought with delight. In my childhood, I read the story by the Russian writer Alexander Green, Running on the Waves. The fantastic heroine was Frezi Grant, a beautiful girl who could run on the waves. I held this poetic image in my memory for ever.
Last Sunday, I once again spent half a day on the beach shooting videos of kitesurfers and wondered why, since I love this sport wholeheartedly and am so fascinated by it, did I never even try to learn? Why did I not at least try it one time? Why, in four years living right on the ocean, didn’t I find the time to take a few lessons? What prevented me from doing this?
I realized that I am stopped by the same obstacles as almost every person who wants to try something new, my fears and doubts. I worry that it’s too late for me to start a new sport. I’m scared that I will fall, and that it will be painful. What if I hurt myself? I’m afraid to leave my comfort zone. I’m afraid to take that first step into unknown territory. I am doubtful that I will be able to kite surf, and that I will succeed.
My friends and family do not support me. “This is a sport for young people, and how old are you? You’re not trained enough. You do not know how difficult it is. It will be very painful to fall,” they tell me with conviction. “Have you tried it?” I asked them. “No, but WE KNOW!”
My fears are intertwined in one dangerous tangle. They literally paralyze my desire.
These fears are the reason that we do not move further, do not develop, do not go forward. We let our fears become stronger than our will. Fear restrains us from our dreams. We have to learn to tame our fears. We have to go beyond our doubts and concerns. Only this way do we become stronger. Only when we step outside our comfort zone can we grow. I know what awaits me there on the other side. I will be more confident and stronger. I will be proud of myself and will say, “I did it!”
What decision did I make today? I’ll take kitesurfing lessons! I will not let my fears stop me. I will not allow myself to be held back by other people’s advice. This is my life and my dream. I’ll fall and get up, fall again and get up again. And then I’ll learn how to avoid falling.
I will run on the waves.