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why i swim - Lowri Morris


It all began as a dare; I couldn’t resist the mischievous invite and I am so very glad I opted in. Wild swimming and the freedom it gave me turned my world inside out, upside down and back to front. It saved my very soul. That’s a whole lot to attribute to swimming outside ‘in ditches with my witches’.


The experience of swimming out in the beautiful landscape is humbling. No matter how many problems your are juggling; they are dispersed by water. Immersion in its visceral beauty makes you feel tiny and then also immense.
Being up to your neck in cold water can be frightening; you have to take control and abandon your fears. It’s a mixture of seeing your own insignificance and then feeling your higher intuition. This encounter with your own irreverence helps you embrace your true desires and find yourself.


 This sense of self turned me inside out. During a battle with Lymes disease treatments and de-habilitating chronic fatigue I took my own control over work, my diet and exercise routine. The slow experience of self healing made me become more patient and kind. I was able to see myself. My reflection in the water became brilliant and it is beautiful.

Gaining control of my physical and mental health gave me the guts to spew out my insides. To slap them on the table to assess clearly what was important and what was not. I turned my life upside down. I had the courage to leave a complex longstanding marriage . I embraced my truth and my queer orientation and I fell in love. Deep, shining love like the water. It is bottomless, it reflects magical light and its been there forever, you just have to look for it.


My transformation is is also down to my connection with some exceptional adventures. Meeting friends, who are also hell bent on a swim, no matter what the elements, is vital to keeping going. It’s not a support group, it’s just safer and the key is no- one leans in too much. We all feel the same and are all responsible for ourselves.



Our antics have taken me back by years, to an ageless time. I can transport back to front and regress to the age of about 17 or even 7. Its like playing out with your best and naughtiest friends. Last of the summer wine meets Huckleberry Finn. I still have bad days but they pass like a nice long wee in the water. The cold water is a welcome slap in the face; the warm drink after is a reminder that we came overcome.
Swimming is great exercise and its never boring. It helps you feel strong on the inside and on the outside. Its taught me to acknowledge the strengths in my weaknesses (to accept images of my backside printed on several hundred bag labels). I’ve belly laughed till I peed myself, cried in grief and joy. Fallen over a million times in gay abandonment (I can say that now)
If you are thinking of trying it. Go on......I double dare you!



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