Wet Behind the Ears


I was in the pool today for the first time in over a year.

I went to La Petite Bailene in the Presidio today with my charges and their mom and got in the pool with one of the boys for his swimming lesson.

My how things have changed.

I taught swimming lessons when I was in high school.

It was NOT La Petite Bailene.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the facility, in fact, I was sort of blown away by the entire set up of it.

They have all the bells and whistles.

And when the little guy got upset, who wouldn’t get upset, suddenly in a new place with a new teacher and a new environment that even for an adult was really stimulating, there was suddenly a lifeguard pool side calling out his name and blowing bubbles down on him like some magic pixie fairy.

God damn.

I did not grow up on swimming lessons like this.

In fact, I cannot remember not being able to swim.

I was just tossed into the water.

I was a water baby.

My mom did say her heart dropped out of her mouth when I was just dropped into the water the first time by the instructor, but then I popped back up and paddle about.

Babies have an innate floating ability until about 4-6 months.

Infants can be taught how to swim.

The phase does pass and then there’s all sorts of techniques to help teach kids how.

I was blown away by all the stuff they had.

The pool in DeForest was a great pool and it was always a refuge for me when I was there, but it did not have the bells and whistles of La Petite Bailene.

I just pretended I did not know what I was doing and let the instructor guide me through the class.

It was fun being a “novice.”

I was completely at ease, although my charge was not so much, clinging and upset, but by the end we did coax a high-five out of him and I suspect that given a few more times in the water, he will get excited to be swimming and having a blast.

I was looking over the posters in the lobby of the facility and all the classes offered and I thought, this is a fucking racket.

There is no way it should take this long to teach a kid how to swim.

No way.

But then I reflected on the nature of the classes and the availability of pool time that most of the kids get and it’s just not the same for a city kid like it was for me in high school.

We were always in the water and I was always teaching.

I think we also ran three-week sessions where the kids would come in every other day or every day and they got the bulk of the learning down.

The lessons at this facility are only offered once a week.

I don’t think most folks can swing more than that out of a busy family schedule.

It’s a lot to get to the pool.

But it was a fun distraction and a great way to pass a large chunk of the day.

I didn’t mind driving cross the town to get to the class.

It was nice to sit and be still for a minute and see the city from the seat of a car instead of the seat of my bicycle.

My legs got a work out yesterday and today and I am feeling it.

So a nice sit in a car seat as a passenger was a treat.

A treat I will get once a week for the next three months–we are signed up!

And it does make the day go by super quick.

The boys were hungry for dinner when we got back and after unloading them, feeding dinner, and doing bath time, it was all the sudden time to go.

I did not get the typical break in my day as it was Columbus Day and school was out, so I had both the boys, but I did not mind, as I said, the day passed quickly and the sitting in the car did feel like a break, it’s a luxury to sit that long when one is a nanny.

It was nice, too, to be in a pool.

I was quite tempted to dive around myself and cavort a little, but there was no opportunity for that with my charge, I think there will be once he has a little more time, but it did make me think that it wouldn’t be a bad idea to go swimming once in a while for myself.

Not open ocean swimming like I have talked about, I don’t think I want to work that hard right now, but in a pool would be nice.

There’s a couple of pools in the Mission and the one at 19th between Valencia and Guerrero has lap swim.  Maybe the next time I am in the park I will check it out, see if there’s a time that makes sense for me to do some lap swimming.

Just a thought.

I have plenty going on in my life as it is.

Trying to date.

Doing the deal.

Living life.

Writing.

I forget the time commitment I have to do the writing and I do it every day, which is why I probably forget that it too eats a good portion of time.

Time that I do not resent or regret, it makes life for me better, my therapy, the pen and the paper, my outlet, the blog, my connection to something outside myself which seems to speak to me through the writing here.

I don’t necessarily have to cram in more stuff.

Unless it’s fun.

I was told tonight to do one fun thing a week.

Swimming could be construed as fun, now that I think of it.

Or going on a date.

That’s supposed to be fun right?

I’m just going to leap into the deep end and find out.

I might even make a date for this weekend.

Get my fun on.

Paddle about and try to keep my head above water.

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