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Incredible as it seems, drysuits hadn't crossed our minds. Maybe because I'm a beginner too (less than her), so much so that I haven't even started buying my own equipment. We've always rented it, and it's always been wetsuits for us. But it's likely to be the easiest solution in the long run.
I don't know where do you live, but in cold countries it is completely normal that OWD classes are run together with dry suit classes because it is not possible to dive wet suits here either during a summer. Rental dry suits are common here, too.
Dry suit is definitely not a tool just for advanced divers and I think it can be the eaiset solution in this situation. If you want to try it first, go for vacation to Sweden for instance, get dry suit certified and enjoy world's top class wreck diving together with your cousin
And if you figure out you like it, buy some 2nd hand dry suit or some cheaper model. For recreational warm water diving, a dry suit doesn't have to cost an arm and leg. Btw, it is much more comfortable experience compared to wet suits overal