Failing at Scuba Diving

By: Ivy Wang

This winter break, I went to the Cayman Islands and expected to come back and write a cool article about how I became certified in scuba diving. But that didn’t exactly work out. Before leaving for the Caymans, I spent almost 10 hours doing the online course for scuba certification. It was a lot of work and not super interesting but I thought it would be worth it if I could get certified. The second day we were in the Caymans, a van came and picked my mom and I up to go to the dive site. After filling out paperwork and learning about the equipment, we suited up and went into the water. It was right by the shore, so only 6-8 feet deeps. We swam out a few feet and put our faces in the water to practice just breathing with the regulator underwater. The instructor then asked us to try to descend to the bottom of the water to practice other skills. When descending underwater, it is necessary to equalize (remove pressure from your ears) every few feet before you feel the pressure. I was able to go down underwater but I was really struggling to equalize. After trying all different methods and techniques for a while, the instructor finally told me that I probably should stop and try another time. That was the end of my scuba diving experience. Apparently, I’m just one of those people who can’t equalize and may never be able to scuba dive. I wasn’t too sad because I spent the time I would’ve been scuba diving, laying in the sun at the beach but I was annoyed that I spent so much time doing the online learning only to be unsuccessful in getting my certification.