A SCARY STORY…
hi guys, sorry about the late post today! i thought i would share a personal story today. it’s been so uplifting to read all of your comments on my age post, the engagement really makes it a lot easier to open up about personal struggles and my daily life. i think we all just want to relate to each other…whether it’s about troubles in business, relationships, balance…we’re all going through our own junk.
i’ve touched on this a little bit in the past, but never in detail. in 2009 i went to costa rica with arian (my boyfriend.) it was our first long trip together as a couple and we had an entire 10 day adventure planned. something truly awful happened however…
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our second day we decided to go to the manuel antonio national park tour…i really wanted to see some monkeys. towards the end of the tour we were given a break to chill on the beach for about 30 minutes and we could swim in the ocean if we wanted to. when he announced that, i got this terrible feeling. i have always been moderately scared of the ocean (or any water that i can’t see the bottom of) my mind always drifts to the worst case scenario (sharks!) so i decided i was just going to sit on the beach and enjoy the view. a part of me was angry with myself for not going in…i thought “bri, when are you going to be in costa rica again?” and “seriously, nothing is going to happen, you’re being ridiculous.” but in the end i just didn’t want to. arian was nice and stayed with me on the beach, even though i think he wanted to go in the water.
this is the part i remember SO vividly. we sat there for maybe 5 minutes tops and all of a sudden we hear this woman SHRIEKING a scream that i could never forget. the whole beach (there wasn’t a massive amount of people there, maybe 40 or so, and she was not a part of our tour) goes completely quiet. i look into the water and see a woman being thrown around in the water. her arms flailing in the air, being pulled under and then coming up and screaming. my mind immediately thinks shark. it felt like time stood still, like i was watching a movie. how could this really be happening? i turn to my right and arian is gone. my heart is beating so fast. then i see him running towards the water (how did i not see him get up?!) his shoes are in the water and he is pacing around trying to see what’s going on. i scream for him, so frightened that he is going in there. i see a man next to the woman hesitating. he reaches out his arm and yells “COME ON!” for some reason i remember his face the most. you could tell exactly what he was thinking. he wanted to help her but was absolutely terrified. then you see him make the decision to swim to the sand and run out of the water.
by now arian is about thigh deep or so in the ocean and i see the crocodile’s head clamped on to this older woman’s butt and wildly shaking her back and forth. soon she stops screaming and i believe she loses consciousness and her body goes limp (probably out of fear!) arian grabs the woman’s arms and starts pulling her towards the beach (tug of war with a crocodile? oh yeah that happens every day!) now i can see that this is no small crocodile (probably 10-12 feet) and the thoughts that were running through my head with my boyfriend right next to this thing were totally paralyzing. it literally felt like i could not move. then the crocodile lets go and chomps it’s jaws once. arian quickly runs backwards, dragging this woman up to the sand. (i know, this seems hard to believe, right?!) the crocodile sits and watches for a few seconds and then turns around and goes almost all the way under the water…we see the top of its head swimming into the distance. (it had a very “i’ll get you next time” vibe) everyone crowds around the woman at this point, no one saying anything to arian and he’s sort of pushed to the side.
she ended up being totally fine. arian said that he could see “holes” where the croc had biten into her backside. but from what we could see she appeared to be in okay condition, just massively shook up. arian runs over to me and says “did you see that!?” UM YEAH! I SAW THAT! about 10 minutes go by and the tour guide says “you guys ready to move on to the rest of the tour?” almost like nothing happened. it felt like we dreamed the whole thing. i was so proud of him i could barely put it into words. he saved that woman’s life. we got home and called our parents. they thought we were pranking them. i WISH we were pranking them.
now, do i think this is a reason not to go in the ocean in costa rica? probably not. it’s rare i’m sure. a freak accident. but i will tell you that i haven’t been in the ocean past my ankles since. i’ve been wondering lately if i’m ready to go in (arian went surfing the next day!!) or will i ever even go in again? i don’t want to go in if i am just going to be paranoid the whole time and i can’t seem to let go of that experience. but i’d like to overcome the fear…and i know, i know…that means i have to face it.
have you had a traumatizing experience that made it to hard to face your fear? of course i love a good story…do tell! -bri
(does anyone know where this photo came from, it fell down the rabbit hole of tumblr and i can’t find the source!)