Humans of Swimrise: Why do you swim?
Steve Flynn: We only really swam in summer, we were never one of those “crazy” people who swam in the sea during winter. However we met Niall one day while down taking a photo of the sunrise and he asked if we were going swimming, he may have asked but we heard it as a challenge and in we went. Little did we know that this swim was going to be a start of something, a friendship, a community and a love affair with the sea! We never thought we’d continue to swim all winter but we joked at the start of each month, “we paid our membership for the month, we better keep going”, the bit that sustained us was the friendship, the togetherness, and the laughter. It’s grown from a few people, to many, to a ritual that has enriched our life is so many positive ways.
Humans of Swimrise: What is your favourite part of the swim?
Steve: I think my favourite part is the friendship, the community, how no matter who you are or what you do, when you stand in a pair of togs about to embrace the cold we all feel the same fear, anticipation and are equal. It really helps bring us together and build a community. I love when we celebrate each others birthdays and I feel like I’m at one my kids birthday parties, where there is this wonderful sense of jubilance and it could be 6.50am on a cold winter morning and everyone is delighted with life, sharing cake, laughter, joy while standing in togs embracing life. It reminds me that often the simple things in life can be the best!
Humans of Swimrise: How do you feel after your swim?
Steve: Connected and grateful to be alive, sometimes I wonder is this wonderful feeling because in some scared part of me I felt like I was going to die and then there is this euphoria having survived? I love how the sea transforms how I feel, how after a swim I feel present, calm and pulsing with life, its like the saturation has been turned up, I can hear better and feel like there is more space to appreciate the intricate beauty of life, the colours are brighter, even on grey days when its raining I come out saying wow its a beautiful day - I think the sea gives and feeds my optimism and gratitude!
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