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Learning to Breathe Again

Tammy Trent

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Excerpts from Chapter 11: The Blue Lagoon

It was a wonderful, busy summer ... All we could do was keep working, keep taking our music to everyone who would have us... And like a pot of gold waiting at the end of the rainbow, there was a trip to Jamaica waiting for us at the end of the summer. The trip would be an all-expense paid mission trip sponsored by Salem Communications to benefit an organization called Food for the Poor... then [we would] come back and be a spokesperson for the group on Christian radio stations.

I was so excited to be going to Jamaica knowing I had nothing to do for a whole week but just play with Trent. Trent was my best friend. We could sit and talk for hours, and that's what we did during that week in Jamaica.

(Our last morning at the resort) We got in the car, I put it in reverse, and off we went. We would spend the night in Kingston, where we would meet up with the Food for the Poor representatives. But first, Trent wanted to go free diving in the Blue Lagoon. We finally got to the village we were looking for and followed the signs that took us down a little road leading to the Blue Lagoon. We parked the car and walked over to the water, watching all the people and boats at this remote little pocket of paradise.

There was a restaurant with open-air dining right over the water. It was the perfect place to have lunch. We sat at one of the tables, enjoying the spectacular view. Afterward, we walked back to the car so Trent could put on his dive suit. Before he pulled up the zipper, I stopped him to take his picture. Oh, did he look yummy!

We settled onto the edge of the dock, dropping our feet into the clear, warm water. In the last year or so, Trent had taught himself to free dive. He had done his usual research, then he practiced in the bath tub.

Whenever Trent was free diving, he usually went at least a hundred feet deep. [But] Trent didn't take risks when he was diving. So I wasn't worried at all as Trent prepared to dive that day.

He stopped in the water, just at the point where the clear, aquamarine shallows shaded into the deeper blue. He turned back to me, lifted his hand beside my head, and quickly bent his finger forward and up. His wide smiled appeared beneath the mask. I smiled back at him, lifted my hand beside my ear, and mimicked his finger-flapping in the same tight little motion. Then, Trent turned back toward the deep water, sank beneath the surface and was gone...

The sun was warm, and the water was rippling ever so slightly in the soft, tropical breeze. What a wonderful place this is, I thought... I jumped, suddenly aware of the passage of time. I looked at my watch, frowning as I studied its face and calculated how long it had been since I'd seen Trent. He'd gone into the water about 2:00. Now it was nearly 2:30. I scanned the lagoon, watching for Trent's head to pop through the surface again...
A boat came into the cove.

... Another 15 minutes had passed. Now I was walking anxiously along the edge of the dock, peering out toward the lagoon. When the boat came into the dock, I trotted over a catwalk and hurried out to meet it... I said: "My husband's out there, and I can't see him... Would you take me out there to look for him? " "Of course. Get in," the boat's driver said.

We cruised slowly over to the lagoon and peered down into its mysterious depths. Nothing. The men took me back to the dock. When I stepped off the boat, I broke down, sobbing in absolute fear... Trent was in that hole. I knew it.

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