I’m so proud of L. She was promoted to Level IV of the Y swimming classes today. Basically, she’s learned how to do the crawl and side-breathe. She can still only swim about 10 yards before she needs a break. On a macro level, it’s not a big deal. My brother was already swimming competitively at age 6, as do many, many kids back where I grew up. Still, it’s been an uphill battle here. First of all, global warming aside, we still don’t have THAT much truly hot weather here in Seattle. It’s in the 80s to low 90s the last few days, but as of Wednesday it’ll be back in the 70s. There are very few neighborhood pools here. Most pools have limited “free swim” time, just lessons and classes most of the day.
Then, I started L in swim lessons at 3. The teacher promptly dunked her. Hysterics ensued, and we ended up dropping out. (It didn’t help that Bri was an infant in arms at that point.) We sporadically did swim through the years, and she finally made it out of Level I (water acclimation) into Level II (Water Movement.) Water Movement is more or less where they learn to swim. To get out of Level II, you need to be able to kind of swim, not gracefully, but definitely swim. And she was stuck in Water Movement forever. We kept not signing up for lessons for one reason or another – classes were full or it wasn’t convenient or whatever. Finally, this summer, I decided these children were going to learn to swim. The Y does lessons Monday through Thursday in summer to two week sessions, and so both girls started going to the lessons four days a week. Our awesome nanny found a pool that actually had free swim in the afternoons and started taking them swimming a few times a week in addition to lessons. And finally, not surprisingly, they started making progress.
Some things are easy for L. Reading, studying, art, dance, things that aren’t physical or scary. Those things are easy. But things like swimming, riding a bike, and probably lots of things to come, are not easy at all. And the satisfaction when she learned to ride her bike and now learned to swim is just huge. It feels so good for both of us.