What I Am Proud Of

Although last week was overwhelming at school with so much work and stress, I decided to reflect and truly focus on the positive aspects. Last week I received a fellowship from the Wonderment for my project, and I am super happy about that because it shows how much potential there really is to grow the project and truly create change. Another thing I am proud about is my first surf competition. I am a free surfer and I have usually been against competing, but during one of our CCP classes (College and Career Prep), my teacher recommended I compete in order to strengthen my surfing profile on college applications or resume. I did a lot of thinking and finally decided to sign up for two surf competitions, one in Marbella which was this past weekend, and one in Avellanas (my home break) this upcoming 2-3 of March. Only 6 girls signed up in total for the Open Women category, including me, so they went straight to semis, which meant we would only compete on Sunday. Either way, me and my friends drove all the way down to Marbella (45 mins) on Saturday to surf and check out the first heats of the guys in the competition. It was fun to get to train there the day before but it also made me even more nervous to see the competition going and simply imagining myself wearing the jersey the next day. When Sunday finally came around, I surfed a little bit early when we got there and then went to get ready for my first heat ever. I sat on the beach, waxed my board, drank water, got my jersey on and watched the waves. My heart was pounding by this time, I was super nervous but also excited because the waves were starting to get super fun. When there were 5 mins left for my heat, I started paddling out, and once I was out and the heat started, I caught as many waves as I could. I caught some really fun waves but the shape was a little complicated so I didn’t do my best. I couldn’t try as many maneuvers as I wanted because the wave was really fast and for me it is really hard to catch speed with the board I currently have, which is a bummer, but I want a new one for my birthday in order to improve my surfing. I kept hearing the announcer say my wave scores and for being my first time, I was happy with my 1-2s. I stayed in second place for a long while which was super exciting, because it would mean I would pass to the final! I kept having fun out there but paddling back out a huge set caught me. I duck dived as deep as I could and the wave held me under for a long time, I started running out of breath… It was really difficult to pass this heavy set pounding on me, and at one time I had to try to sit on my board in order to stick my head out of the water and try to get air. It was kind of scary because I was under water for so long and being so nervous about the competition wasn’t helping much to staying calm. Once I made it out again, I kept catching waves and trying to do my best. I moved down to 3rd place which was a bummer because I ran out of time and couldn’t catch anything else; I didn’t move to finals but I was still stoked on surfing and catching 7 fun waves in 20 mins. I am proud of myself for being open to trying new things, and actually doing pretty well for being my first contest even if I didn’t pass, I was super close and lost by like 1.71 points. My parents didn’t go to the competition, I went with my friends, but they were competing in the same category as me so it wasn’t like they were there all the time for me. I was able to make it through happy and realizing what I am actually capable of doing motivated me even more for the next competition. I am looking forward to getting a better board so I can improve my abilities and hopefully I can do this before the next contest. I am excited to compete in my home break because I can train more and simply just because I surf it so much I understand the wave well. With passion, dedication, and motivation I am sure I can improve and now I am really excited. Spending the entire weekend under the sun at the beach was tiring, I came home exhausted and a little stressed because I had homework to do but I was stoked with being able to surf fun waves and having a good time. I was truly proud of myself for being open to competing and accepting and cherishing my results. I am also proud that although I was exhausted, on Monday morning I worked really hard on the nursery, I was only able to finish one plot but it took a lot out of me. Working in the mangrove project has always required a lot of physical work which was even more exhausting after I surfed at dawn and then did my workout routine. Felipe came to help around which was nice because it is so much physical work. I was cleaning out leaves of the individual mangrove bags, taking out the dead ones, emptying the dead or empty dirt bags, folding down the bags so they can get water easily when I water them with the hose, and finally rearranging them neatly in the wooden plot. It doesn’t sound like a lot, but it was A LOT, and under the heat it is even worse. After this, I was proud of myself for working hard, even if I only got through a plot, I had a snack with Felipe and then I went surfing for a little more, just to make a little more out of my day before the wind switched and to use out all my energy before taking a nap.

Learning outcomes: Commitment and perseverance, New challenges and new skills, Strengths and areas for growth, Working Collaboratively
Learner profiles: Open-minded, Risk-taker, Balanced, Reflective, Knowledgable

Created By: Rochelle, Costa Rica

Uploaded To: Save the mangrove

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