Opinion: Bermuda Experiencing “Deepwater”

July 2, 2015

[Opinion column written by Glenn Fubler]

Last week, during a late afternoon swim, I was surprised at seeing a 30-something woman swim out into the deepwater, towards the reef line, by herself. The weather was not ideal [although not rough] on that day and in fact I was the only other person swimming at that beach at the time. As I was leaving the area – some 10 minutes later – I noticed, with some concern, that she was almost half-way to the reefs.

I remained anxious for a while. However, it struck me that the woman was obviously comfortable that she had prepared herself, by building her swimming capacity. She demonstrated Trust in herself, even in deepwater.

Our grandchild walked for the first time a few weeks ago. Research scientists contend that this milestone along with learning to talk, are the two most challenging tasks for the Human Family. Babies move through that deepwater due to the Trust that they have in themselves. Rudolph Tanzi, Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School, in his book Super Brain, documents that extraordinary ability of babies to effect their early development, based on Trust both in themselves and their family. However, much of this can be lost by young children due to the circumstances they face.

I had a recent conversation with the parents of a young man – let’s call him ‘Bill’ -who had formerly been involved in the Island’s gang culture, but who has recently successfully completed his first year of university. Initially ‘Bill’ had been performing well in both school and sporting activities over the years, but he went through a stage of not having Trust in himself, and became involved in gang –related activity. After a few years in that deepwater, with the support of family and mentors, ‘Bill’ began to Trust himself again and took the long walk back to his freedom.

Last September ‘Bill’ went off to college. After his freshman success in a variety of areas, he has just been offered a full scholarship by another college. This will provide funding for him to complete his undergraduate program, thus assisting ‘Bill’ in his renewed Trust in himself through new deepwater, towards his goal of a medical-related career.

On last Saturday, about 150 of us enjoyed a concert produced by Taylor Rankin, the local violinist. Taylor has demonstrated Trust in himself and has been travelling through deepwater in various parts of the World, expanding his musical career. He returned and offered 5 concerts – which included various local artists – at different venues, with Saturday’s benefiting Chewstick. Taylor’s Trust in himself led him to give-back – in Trust – to his community.

Chewstick has experienced deepwater. When their lease was not renewed at their former venue, they had difficulty securing an alternative. With a sense of Trust, they were eventually able to lease another one, which requires renovations. Taylor’s Saturday show was scheduled for the new space. However, facing the reality that facilities were not adequate, they secured a temporary, outside ‘oasis’ in the middle of Hamilton, to accommodate the many patrons. This is another demonstration by Gavin and the team regarding the power of Trust.

I was blessed by my circumstances, notwithstanding challenges faced. As a 14-yr old, I landscaped my neighbour’s yards around North Village as a Summer Vacation hustle; with sufficient Trust in myself to earn enough money to purchase my family’s first power mower. Further Trust, fueled my passion to act in solidarity with South Africa when I was 30-something, at a time when not many understood that cause. However, like that swimmer, a few of us moved out into deepwater. Eventually, a growing Global sense of Trust brought successful transformation to South Africa.

Bermuda has been experiencing deepwater over the last number of years. These stories, like that of ‘Bill’, remind each of us to trust ourselves in these challenging times and to work to expand our capacity. I’m sure if you reflect on your own story and that of your family’s, you will recognize examples of the role of Trust in the past. If we Trust ourselves and each other, while developing our individual capacity, we will strengthen our community, transforming our Island.

- Glenn Fubler

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