To swim

Yesterday, my son, who is almost three, leapt into the pool for the first time from the diving board and went head under water.  He swam around with his personal flotation device with a huge smile of pride on his face.  He kicked and put his face in the water repeatedly.  He asked to be thrown in the water from ever greater heights.  It was such a great day to watch him spread his water wings.

Today we went to the beach and it was a different story entirely.  The waves were incredibly loud, there was seaweed on the sand, and the water was much, much colder.  But, it was hard to watch all the same.  He had to be picked up and carried to the water, but refused to put his feet in it (though he did ask for a surfboard – we tried to explain the incongruity, but not-yet-three-year-olds aren’t concerned with practicality).  He screamed, “No! No! No!” when the waves crashed.  In my head, I kept thinking that he should want to dive in (though I was grateful that he didn’t), that he should want to swim out as far as he could for as long as he could.  I suppose I was taking the trip to the beach a little too metaphorically.

But, I do want him to have courage and inspiration, not just in his backyard, but in new situations, too.  I want him to run towards life instead of run from it.  Baby steps for now, though.

3 comments on “To swim

  1. Awww, how cute in the pool! I’d say that’s great for a 3 year old. I wouldn’t worry so much about the beach just yet, to be honest, we all should have at least a little fear of something as huge and powerful as the ocean. I’m sure he’ll get over it if you keep bringing him there and just play in the sand and doing fun stuff. I don’t ever remember being afraid of the ocean but it’s understandable for such a little one to be, even if the waves aren’t big, there is that sort of big, distant ocean sound that surrounds you. I find it comforting but I’ve been around a lot longer than your son! 🙂

    • Thanks, Cranky! I think I just worry he’ll end up not doing things because of fear, something I have struggled with my whole life. On the other, you are right that it is good that he has a little bit of fear in him for something like the ocean. He is adorable and he makes me proud.

  2. Scared of the waves…sounds alot like me! It’s good that you’re getting the little one used to water and the ocean…swimming is healthy, important and fun, and to develop a comfort with and love for the ocean is just as vital.

    Take baby steps with your baby (thought not so much a baby now!), you’re doing the right and wonderful thing.

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