Sunday, May 30, 2010

5/30/2010 Swim time!

Summer suddenly appeared in Northern California!

And with it came a kind invitation from longtime friends to join them swimming at a pool club they belong to. This was a great way to shake out bathing suits, goggles, and swimming skill. Does anyone remember how to swim?

Also, last summer when the kids' cousins visited, Katrina refused to go in the water. What would a year bring?

For starters, they were all very very excited and happy about going -- especially Katrina. She even smiled for a group shot!

And, to my amazement, she got right into the water. No hesitation, no fear -- all smiles and happiness. I was so glad to see it, it was instant fun for her. This pool was better set up for her than any I've ever seen, with a large shallow area just 2 feet deep. She could easily walk around in chest-deep water. She didn't argue against goggles (I wouldn't have insisted), she jumped up and down, she splashed, played with toys, and had a great time.

The sobering moments came in the pool when for some reason, she tried to "swim," or somehow lifted her feet or got knocked off-balance. Even though she was in water that she could easily stand in, she didn't know enough to put her feet back down. I fished her out 3 times, from a horizontal position in which she was struggling and clearly unable to get back up. She was coughing and startled and gasping for breath each time.

I was right with her, but it was nerve-wracking at first knowing that if I turned my head for a moment to chat, I could turn back and find her half-drowning. This is where baby/toddler swim lessons made a huge difference -- the boys at her age were much safer splashing around in shallow water. They wouldn't drown from just picking their feet up. That said, I don't think it'll take more than a few lessons for her to get the basics of water mobility. But this is where her natural non-athleticism is an extra liability. At least now she has the enthusiasm!

My mother will get amusement from this: Katrina's lips were blue and she was shivering when I told her it was time to go home. "NO!" she retorted. She DID NOT want to get out, no matter how cold she was. She threw a tantrum that lasted 20 minutes past when we got home, in fact.

I didn't even bother trying to get pictures, as I needed to be right there with her at all times, and I was enjoying chatting with Betsy, and had to keep an eye on the boys too. Not so much for their safety, but for others' safety. Gabriel got several time-outs for pushing on Julian's head, something I'd warned him sternly about before he got in.

Still, I'm glad to be getting our swim bag at the ready again -- it's that time of year!


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