The kids take swim lessons Monday through Thursday in the morning. The community center offers American Red Cross certified swim lessons. Right now, they’re in the Leisure pool, but will be moving to the bigger pool soon.
When Miranda started swim lessons, the instructor taught her to put her face in the water and turn her head to the side to breathe by telling her to look for and talk to the fish and then listen to the fish (precursor for the front crawl). It’s very cute to hear her repeat that sometimes when she swims at the beach (she says talk to the fishes, listen to the fishes). It’s one of those sayings that is locked into my memory. I’ll probably be thinking about it (and a gazillion other things) when she leaves for college or on her wedding day. Let’s hope she stops this little recitation in adulthood. Her future partner might not find it quite as endearing.
Ally is learning to dive (yes, dive not drive LOL). They start the kids first sitting and then standing to dive. When she had to dive when sitting, she had to go between the instructor’s legs (he’s standing with his legs apart). Basically it teaches the kids to dive deeper rather than a more shallow belly flop. Ally was embarrassed and told her instructor it was disgusting. Haha. He told her everyone always says that. LOL Let’s just say she didn’t dive shallow. Hopefully, this hasn’t scarred her for life.
When Zachary first started lessons, he tried to tell me that he couldn’t float. I told him, well you haven’t sunk yet, so you must be floating. I’m really proud of him. I swear he was born hating water, so it’s been the absolute best to see him enjoying it all. I expected him to really drag his feet or complain about swim lessons, but he’s been great. In fact, he’s the first one awake in the morning and ready to go.
I love these moments. It’s wonderful watching them all exercising, learning and advancing and most importantly, having fun.
One day, the girls left their goggles on a towel hook after lessons. We went to look for them because they cost $20/each and there’s just no way I’m buying more anytime soon. Obviously, there are cheaper goggles, but they break easily. Ask me how I know. Anyway, I get to the front desk and they hand me this huge bin filled with swim goggles. We got into this conversation about the chicken at KFC and the chili at Wendy’s (meat and poultry at fast food places talk). Then they called someone to the front desk and she brought another huge bin filled with swim goggles. I fished through those bins and our goggles weren’t in either bin. They encouraged me to take any of them because there are hundreds, but I couldn’t do it. Then one of the staff checked the regular lost and found bin and there they were. I felt a bit silly for not checking there first, but I was mostly pretty damn happy over swim goggles. Finding lost swim goggles is a unique way of feeling like a hero. Victory is mine! I might fail miserably at some things, but I am the master of finding lost things (and knowing species of fish)! This is sort of the sweet spot of parenting. I plan on enjoying every single minute of it.
My kids stretch the goggles so tight that they leave marks on their faces and their eyes look squished. I’m always telling them to loosen them a bit, but they claim that’s exactly how they want them to be. So in any of the photos of them wearing goggles, their eyes are squashed and look deformed inside. They remind me of the frog from the crazy frog song.
I love the observation rooms and viewing windows at the community center. It’s nice to be able to watch and have the kids know we’re there, but we aren’t distracting them from learning.
Whenever we’re at any activity with the kids, I look around to see if any other parent has started to tear up. Apparently, most parents are made of stronger stuff. My eyes well up and as soon as I feel that burn in my nose, the tears are not far behind. I slowly try to yawn or push my hair behind my ears to make it stop before I’m crying away with pride and joy (not full sobbing, just tears starting to form and fill my eyes). I’m able to stop myself from crying most of the time, but am usually thankful that some other parent says something incredibly ridiculous (Like my little Suzie should be in the advanced class as I see little Suzie practically bawling from fear in the pool or the parents that pointed at Ally and said she’s wearing flippers, that’s why she’s so much faster, but then they realized their son was wearing flippers, too. D’oh) or a toddler in the room cries from boredom, because then I can regain some composure. Then I can be like all the stoic others with their painted smiles and I can blend into the room. Well, if not for all my other idiosyncrasies. Kidding!
Gabe often asks me if I’m okay. Probably sounds like I’m an emotional roller coaster but really he asks because I get quiet. I say yes I’m okay, but I’m usually thinking about how freaking beautiful life is (or sometimes I’m ticked off, go figure LOL). I just drift away in my thoughts, sometimes. And there’s a dysfunctional part of me that wonders how I ever deserved all of this. I press that down and simply accept that Life is good. But let me tell ya, the past 3 months have been like nothing I have ever been through. It’s all the transitions we’re going through as a family. One example, my 11 years of changing diapers is ending. And that is certainly a very strange thing.