Thursday, July 20, 2017

Swimming Lessons

Ben and Tessa have been taking swimming lessons the last two weeks.  It was a four day days a week for two weeks with Fridays off.  Ben has been taking lessons with his preschool classes at the Y for the last two years but Tessa has never had any before.  I loved swimming lessons when I was a child.  Actually one of my earliest memories was of being in swimming lessons in Wyoming.  The memory involves me suddenly holding on to the ledge in a huge pool (it was a normal sized pool but I must have been about three) and I didn't really know what was going on and then I noticed my dad sitting on some bleachers behind a class wall.  My lessons continued when we moved to Gillette, WY when I was in preschool.  If you've ever read a sports article about swimming in the paper you may have seen word of tournaments in Gillette.  It is a city known for swimming and they had some really nice indoor pools there and also outdoor pools.  I took to it easily and by the time I was Ben's age I was able to dive and swim actual strokes.  I know this is true because we moved away from there when I was six.  And you might be surprised to hear this, but apparently Justin used to be on a children's swim team. 

I continued to take lessons every summer at our small town outdoor pool and also my brother and sister and I did a two week session at a nearby college every summer.  The outdoor lessons with our favorite lifeguards were fun, but the college lessons were where the real advancement happened. The woman who ran that program continued to be supportive of me through my lifeguard training and I took the water safety instructor course for college credit from her when I was 19.  If I ever had to perform CPR I would hear her voice in my head telling me the steps.

What crossed my mind about my history of swimming, as me and the other parents obsessively snapped photos of our kids in the water every day, was how there is not one single picture of me or anyone else in my family at swimming lessons or even swimming at all.  I suppose bringing a camera and film near water was not a very good idea.  Also, I don't recall my parents really watching me once I was out of the preschool level which I barely remember.  We modern parents are a different breed.

The Y just revamped their levels and they were always a bit different than the straightforward Red Cross levels Preschool-6 that I learned and taught.  The used to have the fish names like perch, minnows, polliwogs, etc.  Now they have three levels of preschool and it starts over again at level 1 for school age kids 6 and up. 

Tessa was in the first level of all the levels.  She was so cute I could barely stop grinning at her.  She had four kids in her class and two were brother and sister and they were very naughty.  The first week their mom had to sit behind them in a lawn chair because they kept trying to crawl away from the pool and splash everyone. This week the lifeguard had to stand by them and keep them in line. Tessa and the other boy in the class just sat there and looked like little angels. 

She was pretty brave in the water too.  She didn't pass which was ready for since she can't even touch the bottom of the shallow end yet but she behaved and listened which is a very important thing for that age group.  She also got pretty good at dunking her head in the water! 

Ben was in level 2 which is titled "water movement" and he passed with no trouble.  I was glad because he didn't pass that one in his last preschool session.  He was looking pretty confident and he can now tread water. 

I took pictures of them with their certificates (yeah, I know...what was I just talking about?) and they were really excited because the teachers gave them temporary tattoos. 

She looks sad but that glint near her eye is just water from the pool.

Finally moving to level 3!

T-ball is almost over.  We got the pictures back last night and I think they are pretty cute. 

I'm ready to wrap it up because the evenings have been so hot these last few weeks and the sun is just blinding that time of night and the grass of the field is parched and brown and there are ants all over where everyone sits and they try to crawl into my bag.'s for the's for the kids...

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