Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Swim Mom

I'm not a strong swimmer. I could save myself if I fell into the water. But, a stroke other than the side stroke, back stroke or a sloppy version of the crawl stroke? Forget it. Growing up, my dear mother somehow managed to enroll all of us kids in swimming lessons at Meadow Hills during the summers, but I'm sure it wasn't every summer, due to money or scheduling. How she managed this feat at all with all of us kids and usually including a baby, I will never know.

There I am at Bear Lake around eight-yrs-old nervously teetering on the black tube.

When my kids started getting to the age of swim lessons, I felt it imperative that they take lessons and become really comfortable in the water.

Boo in Nana & Papa's hot tub (7 months old)

I spent about a half hour on the phone with our local Parks and Rec. swimming pool to determine the best day, time and session my kids would need (while my own kids cried and yelled in the background). I had to go it alone, so I carefully selected a "Tadpole" session that was before Diddles' nap (9:00am), after breakfast, but before lunch. Finally I got it settled. Boo at 8:30am on M/W, and Yaks on M/W in the evening after Boo's swim session was all over. I printed out a schedule so I wouldn't forget, and smiled that we were on our way to becoming "swimmers".

Boo on the shores of Lake Powell (Summer 2009)

Boo has been going to swimming lessons with "cool guy Rob" on Mondays and Wednesday mornings. Her teacher's name is Rob, but he's cool, so I call him "cool guy Rob". He always has the same amount of facial hair, always wears goggles, and is quiet and reserved. He never cheers, he never gives thumbs up, he never yells, just a quiet "good job" for the kids from Rob. At first I would watch him and would try to will him with my mind to absorb some of my Elementary School Teacher enthusiasm, knowing how far it would go for the kids to have more confidence in themselves and in him as a teacher. But, the more I watched, the more I realized that his style works just fine as well. In fact, maybe it worked better, because when Rob says something, the kids listen, and when he would say, "good job", he really meant it. Boo's made some great progress with him and can float unassisted on her back and almost float on her front, she can retrieve something under water (albeit frantically and as fast as possible). Following her lesson, Rob always comes over and tells me something she did well, and something she needs to work on.

Today after lessons, he came over and gave the report and then quietly said, "Oh, and tomorrow is our last lesson." (blink-blink) "What?" Then quickly in my head went the following processing ("ten lessons, Mondays and Wednesdays, we've had four lessons...four minus ten equals six...six lessons on Mondays and Wednesdays should equal three more weeks...") "Wait, don't we have classes on Mondays and Wednesdays?" Cool guy Rob replied (coolly) "No, this session is Monday-Thursday for two weeks."

When it dawned on me what I had done, there was nothing to do but apologize profusely, nervously chuckle, and attempt to now will my face to stop turning five shades of red. Then I hurriedly gathered up our crayons, coloring books, baby toys, book bag, purse and swim gear and headed for the door, trying to avoid the eyes of the fellow Moms in our class who must have been wondering these two weeks why Boo's mom is so flaky and only comes HALF the time.

I'm kicking myself, slapping my forehead and wondering how, how, how I could have gotten this wrong!? I went to the desk to try to sort out my mistake (I knew it was my mistake) and sure enough, Boo's is M-Th, and Yaks is M/W evenings, starting next week. I had gotten them mixed up.

So, after a whopping FOUR swimming lessons, tomorrow is Boo's last lesson. That equates to $8.00 each 45 minute lesson. It's not bad, but it could have been SO much better. I feel so discouraged. My first attempt to sign my kids up for something, and I totally fail. Maybe I'm not cut out to be a "soccer mom" or a "swim mom", or even a "piano mom". I'm praying I can be organized enough next year to get Boo to school on time every day!

Today I'm doubting even that.

Maybe I should home-school.


laurenthequeen said...

Ames, I'm impressed that you got out the door & to swim lessons by 8:30 (!!!!) in the morning. That, in and of itself, is seriously impressive.

Amy said...

Oh Train, if you lived out here you would understand. You see, we're so far north, it's light by 4:30am! It's as bright as noon-day by 5:00am, so my kids are awake around 6:30am, demanding breakfast at 7:00am. So getting to swim lessons by 8:30 (the pool is up the hill and down the lane behind our house) isn't that amazing. Trust me. :)

Isaac And I... said...

Amy, I think you are the most incredible mom, and I am so grateful to have you as a wonderful example for the future when I reach that stage in my life! You are great and don't EVER forget it! We miss you guys so much!


Isaac And I... said...


I think you are the most wonderful mom, and I am so grateful to have you as a wonderful example! You are geat and NEVER forget it!


Dianna said...

I can't tell you how many times I have done similar things - forgetting piano lessons, important YW parent meetings, kid cooking lessons, forgetting to pick up my child from something, etc. And you know what an exceptional mom I am. ;) So we are all in this together. As long as your kids are alive when Josh gets home, you should feel successful!

Sarah said...

Oh Amy...
I'd be most bummed about the money I shelled out, really.
I wouldn't worry about the other moms...I'm guessing swim classes are like all school/dance/church productions...the parent really is focused on their kid and their kid only.

Being a "swim mom" is something I haven't ventured into yet. I KNOW #1 would just stand on the edge and scream. Probably the.entire.time. #2 would be jumping in whether it was her turn or not...whether she was in a swimsuit or not. And, with #3 heavily in hand, I wouldn't be much help. And that's even on the off-chance I get there on time. :)

Yeah for you getting her signed up and there for the days you did. I'm with you on them needing the skill. One of these days. One of these days. In fact, you've inspired me...maybe I'll call around (Matt's got a friend) and see what's out there in the morning.