WATCH: Competitive diver prepares for 20-metre jump competition
PUBLISHED: 17:04 29 May 2018 | UPDATED: 17:19 30 May 2018
Diving into the sea from a 20m high cliff is not something that comes naturally to most of us.
But taking a leap of faith seems to run in Jessica Macaulay’s family.
The 25-year-old has worked as a professional diver in circuses and cruise ships across the world and is now preparing to make the transition to competitive diving.
After completing her current cruise ship contract, Jessica will represent England as a wildcard in the Red Bull World Series for the second successive year and will shift her focus full time to competitive diving.
Her mother, Karen Macauley, 52, made a similarly bold plunge herself in 1992 when she chose to emigrate from her hometown of Gorleston to Calgary in Canada.
She had been head girl at Claydon High School, before going to work at Duffy and McGovern on the Hafreys Industrial Estate.
But her life was turned on its head when she met her Canadian future husband, Malcolm, at the Ocean Room in 1987.
By the Christmas of 1992 they were married, had just had their second child, Jessica, and were ready to make the move across the Pond.
Two and a half years later the family moved once again to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
In 2001, the family made their final move to Houston, Texas, and Jessica and her older sister, Kelly, joined a local swim team.
Karen said: “Jesse thought swimming was a little boring, but we were members at a facility with a diving tower and one day she pointed at it and asked if she could she try it.”
Jessica went on to graduate from Texas A&M University, who she represented in major diving competitions, before launching her career as a professional diver, performing for 5,000 people as part of a Chinese circus and touring the Caribbean on cruise ships.
But Jessica is eagerly anticipating her switch to competitive diving.
She said: “It’s a rush of adrenaline every time I dive. Facing my fears every dive is terrifying, but the satisfaction I get when I hit the water safely is amazing.”
As for Karen, she couldn’t be more proud.
“Not in a million years would I fancy diving off a cliff, but she is a young woman following her dreams. She amazes us every day.”