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   things. PTSD scuba (www.ptsdscuba. were contacted and asked if a platform could be provided for Ben to ‘have a go’? You know the kind of thing you hear about, people who officially can’t achieve much, you give them a dabble in the shallows wearing a dive mask, let them breathe through a scuba regulator, see a fish or two, job done! “You can stuff that!” said Ben, “I’m either scuba diving or I’m not, and I want to dive with sharks!” Not easy to decipher what he actually said because of his brain injury but I did recognize two swear words. I have missed both of them from the quote above, but I fully got the gist of Ben’s thoughts on the subject!!
So off we go, ensuring that he did a try dive in a swimming pool in the UK, a big thank you to Duncan Bannatyne. Dive equipment was purchased so he could get used to only having to remember what to do with his own gear. On arrival
in the Bahamas (for his first visit 2022) he brought an instructor with him who Ben was used to working with in the swimming pool; great idea. This visit went very well, closely following industry standards for depth and Ben was loaded up with as many skills as he could cope with. A very challenging time for him but he worked extremely hard culminating in the reward of a shark dive donated by the world- famous Stuart Cove, Nassau, Bahamas.
Ben and his family decided they would like to visit for a second year so he could ‘relax and enjoy’ his newfound love of scuba diving, now that he had mastered the skills from the previous visit, or had he, were they correctly remembered? No need to worry about that, he demonstrated every skill asked of him on dive number one, which was his shakedown dive. He then proceeded to show how determined he really is by propelling himself around underwater
with virtually no assistance from either of the instructors accompanying him. One instructor was videoing most of the time, the other one close by in case Ben needed some guidance or help.
He completed a dozen dives on his second trip, one being a night dive, three from a small boat on the coral reef teeming with fish, which is his preferred choice of diving, and the remainder in Deans Blue Hole which is 663 ft (202 meters) deep. When he said he wanted to go to the bottom, several sharp intakes of breath were heard, because knowing him, he’ll find a way to pull it off!!
So, for any readers facing challenges that at first glance appear absolutely impossible, listen to Ben‘s advice (backed up 100% by his family), which is; “help me, follow along with me, or get out of my way” he says when dealing with him you can choose only one!

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