As has been said above, it is common. You seem to be having trouble believing this advice. It would be way faster to just do it and get the boat on the water to feel it out than spend more time worrying about it on this thread.
As to wet exits, I take it you have yet to try this. You will find that you fall out of a kayak much more easily than you expect, in fact it can be difficult to stay in a boat that is bigger. Gravity works upside down too.
I strongly suggest that you take the Tempest to the rescue class, get this concern out of the way with someone there. Sweating wet exits is just going to slow you down.
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