My life as a 13-year old diver has been tough. I have been in freezing cold water at 55 degrees; I have also been to the Cayman Islands where it was 80 degrees in the water. No matter what the temperature, it still has been hard. My dad makes me carry all my dive gear! But the one thing my dad has taught me is that once you are in the water, all the hard work pays off.

I love going diving with my dad. He’s so funny underwater. It’s an excellent way to spend time with your dad. Both of you are relaxed and calm.

This year hasn’t been a good year for me diving, with school and all. Also, I just haven’t wanted to go because of the cold water, but when we do go, I regret saying no to all those other trips that I didn’t go on. Now that it’s the New Year, one of my resolutions is to go diving more with my family.

Since it’s often hard for my mom to dive because of injuries, I have to start to be my dad’s new dive buddy. My brothers were just certified last year, but with college it’s really hard for them to get time to come out and go diving with us. I also would like to get more into the business, like writing articles of dive sites and other things.

Now back to diving as a 13 year old — I know all the divemasters on boats mean well for me, but some of them treat me like a baby. I can take care of myself now. I have been diving for about a year and a half. I personally think boat diving is better than beach diving, but it depends where and when you go beach diving. So some people think differently, but that’s what makes us different.

So over all, I recommend it to other young kids to get certified if you can handle heavy equipment and cold water. It’s fun diving even if it’s for work. My advice is that even if the water is so cold you go numb in your legs, it’s worth it.

Editor and Dad’s Note: Eric really just needs a good custom wetsuit, but when you have a 13-year old boy that grows 3 inches in 10 months, it can be difficult.