The Challenge: Swim with your baby
Having grown up on an island, everyone around me, including myself, learned to swim very early in life. So, I was thrilled when I saw that taking Weston to a swim class was actually Rookie Mom Challenge #27: Go Swimming! Luckily for everyone involved, Laura already completed this challenge, and having read her post, I knew what to bring and what not to bring. I signed Weston up for a 6-session baby swim class, and my girlfriend and her 7 month old daughter signed up too (phew!).
I’m the type of person who gets incredibly anxious about stupid little things, but tackles huge things really well. The morning of the first class, I texted my friend, “I’m so confused! Help! Do I bring the stroller or not? Do I bring both the diaper bag and the swim class bag? Where do I park?” Being the understanding fellow new-mama she is, she called me right away and reassured me that everything would be fine, and if it wasn’t, we’d figure it out. Friends, man.
Thanks to Laura, I remembered a towel for Weston and me. I put him in a disposable swim diaper, and a cotton swim diaper (as per the class’ instruction); I wore my trusty Lands End black bathing suit, and threw a simple cotton dress over it. I wanted to make sure I could get it off fast! We hopped in the car, and headed out to the class. When we got there, I was super confused because the swim class was actually held inside a gym, and I had totally forgotten that part. We finally found the class, shed our clothes, and walked into the hot, loud, and chlorine- smelling room.
Trust the (Wo)man!
Now, this whole time, while I was nervous about the silly little things, I 100% expected Weston to love swim class. He loves the bath, so why not the pool, right? As we got in the water, the kid lost it. He flipped! The instructor came over and tried to show me how to float him, and help him kick, and he was just screaming. She took him for a second to show me some method for kicking, and I looked at him, and I almost started to cry. He was so scared! So, I held him, and we didn’t do any of the tasks we were told, we just sang quietly (it was so, so loud in the room, and I think he was over stimulated!) and bobbed in the water.
The more comfortable he got in the water, the more he trusted me to help him float, or kick. It was amazing to see his progress in just a half an hour! And, it wasn’t about the water at all: it was about my little boy trusting his mom to keep him safe.
I was so proud of him for trusting me, and learning, and stretching his boundaries; and, I was so proud of myself for sticking with it, slowing the process down, and going with his speed.
[Photo credit: Olivia Howell — all rights reserved]
Find more baby activities with the 52 weekly rookie mom challenges.