If you follow along with the show and my blogs, then you know I've got anxiety. It doesn't take much to overwhelm me...and it also doesn't take much for me to take any situation to the "worse case scenario" in my mind. It's worse when it comes to parenting.
My husband and I have been talking about getting our five-year old swim lessons for over two-years. Well, we FINALLY signed him up and his first swim lesson was this past weekend. He has NO experience in the water. We don't belong to a pool. The only times he's been in water is when we've gone on vacation...and once or twice at a random pool party. We usually make him wear those flotation vests...but it's not something we want to rely on forever.
When we arrived at his lesson on Saturday, we noticed he was the oldest kid in class. He's 5 1/2 years old...but he looks like he's seven (he's very tall). Since he's 4-feet tall, he is able to stand in 3ft deep water. I was initially relieved that if he HAD to put his feet down, he totally could. Unfortunately, that didn't stop me from being anxious.
At the place he takes lessons, parents can either sit on a bench by the pool and watch...or they can go to a waiting area where they have closed-circuit TVs that show your child taking lessons. I opted to stay on the bench and take photos/videos...while my husband went to the waiting area. My son isn't the greatest listener, so I wanted to make sure he was paying attention to the instructor. I was standing up. I noticed I was inching closer to the edge of the pool so I could hear what was being said. Just as I was taking my first photos, I got a text from my husband. He said, "You're hovering. He's fine." Yup...he could see me in typical "helicopter parenting" mode from the TV.
I sat down next to the other parents on the bench and tried to make small talk to take my mind off the fact that Donato was jumping around on the platform when he was supposed to be standing still. I saw him fall into the water...and jumped up in a panic. The instructor was there in two seconds and helped him back up. Ugh...I hate how anxious I was. I looked around the pool and NO OTHER PARENT was like me. I eventually started to relax and trust that he was going to be okay...especially when I saw how much fun he was having.
Here are some pics/video from his first lesson. I can't wait to see the progress over the next few weeks...