Polar Plunge.

Some people have bucket lists that are pages long with outlandish goals that may never be reached. I applaud these people; if you’re going to aim for goals, aim high and live your life to your fullest ability.

My bucket list may be short, but each goal I have is in effort to live loudly, proudly, and to give back to society in one way or another. This weekend I was able to cross a goal off of my bucket list: the Polar Plunge.

Polar Plunge Beach / from TheSirensTale.com

The Polar Plunge is a tradition seen in many cold regions of the world, but it’s especially prevalent in Northeast America. The tradition is to plunge into icy 30-degree waters during the winter (February/March typically) all to raise money for a good cause.

When I found out this specific Polar Plunge was supporting a local cancer center, I knew I had found the right event to take part in. My life was first affected by cancer at 16 years old when my Nana passed away from ovarian cancer.

Since that time, I have lost a friend in his twenties to lymphoma, supported my mother through surgery required to remove cancer, lost a great-grandmother to the disease, and watched my best friend struggle through her diagnosis of a rare cancer.

Outfit for Polar Plunge / from TheSirensTale.com

This past Saturday, my team (Team Sink-A-Germ) and I gathered on a beach in Southeast Massachusetts. We dressed up as different germs, with my mother and I dressed up as biofilmCan’t you just smell the geekery through your computer? The outside temperature was 31 degrees and the water was roughly the same. Hello, below freezing!

When the clock struck 1:00pm, hundreds of people began charging toward the ocean. My body worked in auto-drive; I could barely hear everyone’s screams over my mother’s determined voice, “It’s time, just keep going, we’ve got this!

We waded out until we were waist-deep in water. The time had come and there was no looking back! I dove under the icy water and came up screaming. Every cell was ignited in my body and my brain repeated the demand: Get out of the water!

After the Plunge / from TheSirensTale.com
I don’t remember most of the walk out of the water. “Get out of the water” became a mantra that cycled on repeat. In a disoriented haze I stumbled up to strangers, completely unaware of my boyfriend waving his arms and calling my name. In the blink of an eye, he was there and I was wrapped in warm towels that felt better than Christmas Eve as a child.

After changing into warm, dry clothes and heading back to our cars, the day came to an end. A huge goal was crossed off my bucket list, and many members in the community will benefit medically and spiritually because of all the polar plungers. Our team raised over $2,000 to support the local cancer center and a feeling of amazement swept over us all.

Warming Up Post-Plunge / from TheSirensTale.com

What goals are on your bucket list?
Have you ever taken the polar plunge?

48 responses to “Polar Plunge.

  1. What a fantastic achievement and well done for raising so much money. You must have felt very proud for taking the plunge, or so to speak! xxx

  2. elainechoi2014elainechoi

    Reblogged this on The Curious Sage.

  3. hello amazing girl! “I’m not worth, I’m not worthy” Imagine me bowing to you right now! My word! I would die! I was freezing at 50 some odd degrees this weekend, let alone dipping into freezing cold waters. You are amazing. I love that you can cross this off your list.

    Love your friend Tracie

    • Aww! Tracie, you always bring the biggest smile to my face! Thank you for the kind words. I’m so happy that the money/charity is going to help out families during hard times. After all, we all need a hand from time to time!

  4. Totally loving that you did this Cailtin! Polar Plunges are such a great way to raise money for excellent causes. They don’t do them here in Texas (obviously) but they are really big up in Wisconsin (where I’m from).

    • I can’t imagine diving into icy waters in Wisconsin! I always (foolishly) assumed most of the Midwest region had moderate winters, but this winter has surely proven otherwise. Jumping into icy waters when it’s negative degrees outside? My goodness, I just couldn’t!

      It was such an awesome time 🙂 Thank you for your kindness!

      • Yeah….the Midwest tends to never have moderate winters…. 😉 I mean this winter has been exceptionally cold however but every year the temperatures remain in the 0 to negatives for several months. The winter I left Madison we had over a hundred inches of snow — and that was back in 2008. Brrrr in the Midwest and definitely Brrr in your neck of the woods too!! 🙂

  5. Wow, those pictures of you reveal how excited and energised you must have been! Congratulations on going through with it!

  6. That’s amazing, Caitlin. I’ve seen other bloggers write about experiences with Polar Plunges and they are always so inspiring. Great effort on checking off the bucket list item AND raising money for charity!

    • Jessica, it was definitely perspective changing! Your body gets a tingle all over afterwards and there’s a feeling you could accomplish anything you put your mind to. Thanks for the kindness… I’m so glad I was able to take part in the plunge 🙂

  7. great Job! so proud ! that you were willing to take the this plunge for such a great cause!

  8. Ahh!! Oh man, that’s brave! And great job raising so much in donations! At my college they had a program of jumping into a frozen pond on campus every February–I can’t imagine how painful that is!

  9. ahhh that looks cold!! i’ve seen people do this but i don’t think i could ever work up the courage to! 🙂

  10. Good for you, girl! How awesome that you were able to complete a goal AND support an amazing cause. (Though it sounds totally miserable!) 🙂

    • Thank you, Susannah! It was such a great experience. One part that stuck out was when I was drying off on the beach, I looked around and saw so many cancer patients and survivors. That was such an amazing feeling to see the people the charity is helping 🙂

  11. I love that your bucket list fulfills to goals – personal growth and community involvement. Congratulations and stay warm!

  12. Wow, good for you! Great cause but I can’t imagine, I am such a wimp~

  13. Well this was such a cool surprise! I thought you were writing about an event in your city… and then I saw that you did it yourself!! Wow, I’m so impressed!! That is so brave and daring.. and to raise that much money is beyond awesome! Do they have people there to help you if you get in trouble trying to get back out of the water??

    • Thank you, Smidge 🙂 I should have added a picture of the rescue divers on the beach. Down the shore line, they have rescue divers in the water, along with people out on boats. Most of the polar plungers only went in up to their waist, but the divers kept a close watch on all of us that plunged in (to make sure we came back up!) They did a wonderful job.

  14. That really is brilliant Caitlin. And all for a great cause. I don’t know if I would be so brave. 🙂

  15. Love it! I did the Polar Bear Plunge a few years ago with no cause attached. I’m glad you did it and it benefited the community!

  16. I’d never do it, but I’ll be there cheering everyone on with a warm blanket and cup of hot chocolate after it was over! My son did it in Wales this year.

  17. Wow, this is awesome! My hat is off to you, my dear, what an acheivement for you and for your fundraiser. I’m certain I would have had a heart attack. 😉

    • Thank you so much! It’s funny you say that about a heart attack… I was convinced I would have one! Before jumping in, I kept telling my family members I was going to run straight out to the rescue divers so they could save me, haha.

  18. You’re a braver soul than me. Well done!

  19. Pingback: Month in Review {March}. | The Siren's Tale

  20. Wow! I missed this. Thanks for reblogging this post. I am amazed how people can do this even for a good and worthy cause. Wonderful bucket list item checked off. You Go Girl!

  21. Pingback: {March} Month in Review. | belong with wildflowers

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