I was determined to figure out why I sucked as much as I did the last two weekends. Did I forget how to dive a drysuit or did I just not have it down to the degree I needed in the first place? My money was on the latter. I wanted to give myself the time and freedom to figure this out on my own so I headed to the Breakwater solo. I had also switched to my more normal sized 100 doubles and ditched the Thinsulate socks.
The first hour in the water, I was making the exact same mistakes as before and almost threw in the towel right there. Almost as a last ditch effort, I decided to throw caution to the wind and force myself to not be afraid of a fast ascent (JR told me this last week but I didn't believe him). I mean, I was already doing really bad and wasn't really concerned about popping up. Maybe it was knowing that or this new approach being actually what was needed, I'm not sure but something finally clicked in my brain and I was actually able to manage a half decent stop. Another thing I did was take a cue from watching D'Or's videos from last week - a foot from the target stop, I threw myself rather violently into a sprawl and that brought me almost to a complete halt. D'Or had told me about his experience with this (I didn't believe him either). I'm sure he was doing it a lot more gracefully than I was - at this point, I'm totes OK with not being graceful. I was just happy I could manage it at all without reaching for my inflator. I did a couple more attempts of this to make sure it wasn't a fluke and breathed a huge sigh of relief when I realized it wasn't.
-> 107min, 39ft, 54F
I'll be honest, that took some doing. I might have to do another solo session to reinforce some of the new things I'm doing but I feel cautiously optimistic about where I am now.