This is a reply to Sepsep's comment on a previous post, got too wordy for a reply that it deserved to be an entry post.
... if meron ka raw fear of something without prior trauma or bad experience since childhood, maybe in one of your past lives (yes, may kinalaman sa reincarnation chuva, if you believe in it), you died because of it...most likely ay namatay ka pagkalunod sa isang past life mo.
Interesting idea, which made me reconsider my childhood. I'm not sure though if this would count as a traumatic experience...
Back in the summer after first grade, I was enrolled in a swimming class. Started out with the basics, and gradually worked my way up the levels. I do remember one incident, after the day's lesson during our first day of floatation techniques, we were frolicking in the pool. I slid down the pool slide without an idea how deep the drop point was. I was a small kid back then, and I had a sudden sense of panic when my puny feet couldn't touch the pool's bottom. It was a long 15 seconds or so of struggle as I try to stay afloat. Good thing one of the instructors was nearby and caught my dilemma. Busog na rin ako sa tubig by then.
I remember I was a competitive kid , but a crybaby as well. There were a couple of instances that I cried and clung to my instructor (who happened to be a chinito hottie, :P) when we were made to swim the whole length of the pool from 4-feet up to the 6-feet deep. After a few rounds of tarsier clasp to my instructor, and encouraging words from him, I eventually was able to do my laps with some breaks midway. I was simply a crybaby for new challenges, but I feel damn proud once I accomplished them.
Another panic episode during that summer class, was during our diving lessons. It was one of the final lessons for that basic swimming course, and I had my first try.
It was a smooth entry into the water. With hands stretch in front of me, nothing touched me except the water freely flowing against me. With eyes tightly shut, since I wasn't wearing my goggles, I could only rely on proprioception how far I was gliding underwater. But with my eyes shut, I could tell that my surrounding was getting darker, a not so subtle change that had me counting in my mind - "1 Mississippi, 2 Mississippi, 3 Mississippi...". It will be just a few Mississippi's left until I can gasp for air. "... 12 mississippi, 13... 15 - uhm, How long am I supposed to be gliding?". Then I panic and quickly paddled my limbs in all directions.
"Ang lalim naman! Ano na nasisid mo?" was the first thing I heard as I came to the surface. It was the chinito instructor, who later told me my dive form was good, but my entry was too vertical. Kaya pala padilim ng padilim ang naaaninag kong liwanag sa ilalim ng tubig. At that time, I wasn't the crybaby anymore, so that diving incident wasn't as bad as I thought.
I'm not sure if those petty swimming mishaps are considered traumatic, but I sure did enjoy swimming and became an able swimmer. The fear of swimming in open waters was only realized years after I graduated from that swimming class. I don't know when exactly, but I was not a little kid anymore. Just the thought of something pulling me, sinking me down to the depths gives me a sense of panic that I frantically start paddling to shore.
Thinking about Sep's idea of death from a past life, makes me wonder...
"I couldn't have been a mermaid in my past life."