Friday, July 2, 2010

Jack learns to swim

Okay, I just have to talk about this! Those of you that have heard the story already, please bear with me because I'm just so excited!

It happened yesterday, at the local pool. Jack and I decided to visit it for the first time in 5 years. Yes I know it's an awesome pool and we should have been doing this all along, but I guess that is part of the reason why Jack was hesitant to even learn how to swim. We don't really have access to a pool (typed that as "poop" a few times before I could get it right. Sigh) Anyway, we just don't swim a lot.

Jack has been taking lessons for quite awhile now. Since last Fall maybe? He hasn't been able to advance to the next level because he was always afraid for the instructor to let him go when he wasn't wearing a floaty thingy. But lately, Jack has become more adventurous. I noticed that when he was in the bathtub, he would submerge his entire face and hold his breath for longer periods of time, without holding his nose. And, he was getting stronger at kicking and swimming while wearing a float bubble or holding onto one of those barbell things.

So, there we were, by the pool yesterday. I decided not to go in at all, not to even get my feet wet, because I thought he might be a little more daring without me as a distraction. He started out just clinging to the side in 2-foot-deep water and saying he was cold. Then he splashed around. Then he started jumping in from the side. I suggested he practice holding his breath and go under the ropes. He tried it and it worked! Next thing I know, he's putting his face in the water and sort of half floating. Soon enough he was full floating, and then added in the thrashing kicks and arm swings that only a 5-year-old could equate to swimming. Funny thing was, he started to move! Then he jumped straight up and had this look of shock on his face.

Jack: Mom!!! I was just floating without EVEN touching the bottom!! I never did that before! (he puts his face in and starts float/swimming.)
me: Jack! Guess what? You are swimming!
Jack: (incredulous) Whaaaatttt? I AM???? Ha! I guess I am!!!
me: Do it again, what you just did. I want to take a video for Daddy.
Jack: (beaming from ear to ear) Okay, here I go! (He thrashed his way from one rope all the way to the other without stopping for air or even touching the bottom. I was amazed!)
me: You did it Jack! I told you that you had to figure it out for yourself, and you did!
Jack: (coming over to hold onto the edge) I actually swam Mommy!
me: (looking around to see who I can tell...just a pimply grumpy teenage lifeguard who couldn't care less) How does it feel???
Jack: I can't believe I can swim now! Oh, it's so easy!
me: Welcome to the club. :)  If you want, when your swimming lessons start again next week, we can probably move you up to the next level.
Jack: (little panic) Naaaahhhhh... (waves his hand) I should just stay where I am and practice this a bit longer first, heh heh.

Jack is confident, quick and eager to learn, but still my little boy underneath all that machismo.  :)

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