On Monday I experienced one of those heart swelling; emotional; tearful; amazing moments.
One of those moments where you feel like you might explode with pride.
On Monday the wee girl swam; on her own. No hands holding her or supporting her. No hands guiding her. Nothing!
I rarely took the boys swimming when they were tiny, which is something I regret. Working, all but, full time, I simply didn’t have the opportunity to take them. No mummy and baby swimming classes for them, only the odd visit to a pool; with friends or on holiday, until they were old enough to take lessons with their nursery class.
So when we moved to the States, as soon as the wee girl was six months old, I signed up for infant swim classes. She loved the water right from the start. As soon as she turned eighteen months, she moved up into the toddler class. She got her own bubble (strange flotation device, strapped around their middle with a ‘bubble’ on their back, required at our YMCA!) and seemed to enjoy it even more. She gained confidence by the week, starting to show me where she wanted to go, spending much of the lesson jumping in: one, doo, dee, JUMP!
I’ve been saying for few weeks that she wasn’t far off swimming independently, but I was still rather taken aback on Monday when after her first jump into the pool she said again! and swam out of my arms and back to the side of the pool… It was only a couple of feet, so I thought it was probably a fluke. But then she decided she wanted to jump in at the steps; half a width away.
And swam to them!
Now, my daughter is nothing if not a show off; and Monday was no exception. She was comical. No dainty doggy paddle for her! Oh no, we had full on splashing and spinning and giggling. Huge grins and lots of yay! She swam all over the pool and she was inordinately pleased with herself.
I actually thought I might cry, I was so unbelievably proud of her.
There are several mums in the class who I have known since we first arrived in the US. Our babies have grown into toddlers together. The collective pride in one of the babies taking the big step to solo swimming was very special, and I feel very lucky to have shared the moment with them. It is a day I will never forget.
Of course, deciding to swim wasn’t enough for my little girl. She also decided five minutes before the end of class that she’d had enough: climbed out of the pool by herself (with me chasing after), walked over to our towels, picked them up, shouted ba-bye and strode off towards the changing rooms leaving a trail of amused parents behind her!
That’s my girl :)