There are many reasons why you could botch a takeoff. Lets start with wave selection. You think you have a left, on no, maybe a right, oh shit it closing out! Get off before it dumps. You can't surf close outs. Actually I have but if you don't get munched you're only surfing whitewater. What are the conditions like? Are they A-frames or mostly closing with small shoulders on either side. A-Frames are ideal. Some days a good shoulder is hard to find. Without a good shoulder you won't get a good ride. There is the tide to consider. Low tide waves are more likely to close out but at high tide they may not break until the shore and you don't want to surf shore breaks. You should also watch the sets carefully. Some day you will have small waves coming in fairly regularly and then a large clean up set comes along. If you try catching the smaller waves you could get creamed by the clean up set but if you stay further back then you won't be able to catch the smaller waves and will have to wait for another clean up set to arrive. In other words where you position yourself is critical and varies by sets.
So give me a better description of how you screw up and what the waves are like when you screw up.