Guest Post by Alicia
I am not a diver and I never will be due to my dislike of the sea and having a need for fresh air rather than compressed oxygen. I could never commit myself to such a hobby and way of life that would not allow me to settle down and start a family as this is always something that I have dreamed of so it amazes me to see how dedicated divers truly are.
I have been friends with Madeline for over 2 years now and during this time I have learnt that to divers, diving is not just a hobby or their passion but is a way of life. Diver’s give up so much in order to do what they love and this should be admired by all. They choose to give up a long term relationship, a family, a permanent home that they come home to every night after a regular 9-5 job, and whilst this used to seem such a strange concept to me I have come to understand that they are willing to give up all this to follow their passion. To me this shows real commitment and dedication, to such an extent that it is equal to, if not higher, than the commitment and dedication shown by world class athletes.
I have learnt that diving is not just about ‘seeing pretty fish’ as I used to think, there is so much more to it. Diving is a challenge. There is always something new to learn, you will never stop learning. This may be learning something technical such as sidemount or learning to use a re-breather, or even discovering a new type of fish or coral there is always something to learn. Diver’s have a desire to learn as much about the ocean as they possibly can and this takes them to many places around the world, something which I wish my passions would allow.
Through their passion diver’s do travel globally to learn as much as they can and this brings all divers together as part of a community. I have never seen such a strong sporting community as that of the diving. Every diver is part of a large worldwide family, their love of what they do brings them together. They are keen to share their knowledge and experiences with each of celebrate together their success and support each other through difficult times.
Diving is a demanding and dangerous sport but to see the incredible joy that it brings to Madeline, and many of you I am sure, makes it seem worth it. The sights you get to see must be breathtaking and cannot possibly compare to what people like me see at aquariums. The dedication and passion to your sport is what brings you together as such a tight community and it is very humbling to see this from the outside. Divers truly are amazing people. You give up so much to do what you love and that must be acknowledged and celebrated. What you do whether it be for a hobby or as a job is truly incredible and I would like to thank you all and in particular Madeline for letting me see what it means to be a diver.