Saturday, August 24, 2013

Best Swimming Yet!
Let's talk about swimming! 
Wow! Haven't you done well Chips at swimming. 
Long time coming but it is coming,slowly but surely you are getting stronger and everyone is noticing. 
Last week your teacher said you did your best ever swimming. 
And I agreed. 
And so did the lady next to me.
And Fs mum,our shower partner in crime. 
And our Twitter friends are glad for us 
And your mamma and grandad have noticed and are suitably pleased.
So Chipmiester,people are noticing and are very happy for you. 
Which is nice to know and does make me smile. 
And yesterday you finished stage three and got a badge and a certificate. 
It's been a whole year since you got a badge. 
Thats a long time for a little one to wait...and to still keep on trying. 
That makes me as proud as the swimming itself Chips. 
The fact that you have stuck this out,through thick and thin,even when times have been hard,even when you must have wondered when it was going to click for you. 
Well your hard work has paid off and even more exciting than the certificates you received yesterday was the mention of the big pool.
Wowzer! The big pool! 
If you keep improving,you and this group of young swimmers may be moving up to the big pool next time.

 Now that is something to aim for. 
We shall just have to wait and see. 
I knew how special your achievement was when I saw the physios faces at our last appointment. 
That's when I knew, even more so, just how well you had done with this swimming lark. 
That night your teacher had said you needed to be a bit more stronger to achieve your stage three and I can remember still grinning because I had seen your arms moving more fluidly and the stage three didn't even register in my head that night.

Your mamma rang that night and was indignant about the teacher saying you should needed to try harder;

"Doesn't she know how hard he tries" she yelped.

But even through all that I still had that proud little feeling tucked in my heart.

Who cares what a swim teacher thinks and I mean that in the best possible way.

She is looking at strokes and strength and techniques.

All well and good and I really like your swimming teachers Chips,we have been with them for years now.

But I'm dealing with something far more precious.

I'm dealing with perseverance and strength of character and tenacity and just the sheer effort it's took to make those flippin muscles of yours move!

Movements for which most other children are as natural as eating ice creams and sweeties.

But not for you sweet boy,these movements take learning,lots and lots of learning.

And that's why the look on the physios face was more important than the words of the swimming teacher.

The physio knew where you had started and how hard you had fought to get to swim at all.

Week in,week out,small,small steps,that have tired you out most weeks.

But kid,you are doing this,you truly are.

And I have a dream,yep just like Martin Luther King had a dream.

I dream that one day you will swim a length in the big pool and even more ideally you will swim 50 metres.

At that I would think you were truly a swimmer and I would feel safe in the knowledge that you could swim and get yourself out of trouble if necessary.

This is my aim. And I hope it will come true.

We shall see.

And in the meantime keep up the good work Chips,mummy thinks you are great and is so proud of she always is.

And now part two!This is what I thought about in bed last night...the swim saga continues!

Swim 2!

And another milestone and magically marvelous moment last night was when your teacher,Jenny, asked you to demonstrate 'push and glide'

You are good at push and glide.You seem to have quite a knack for floating and being restful in the water when needed to. We sit and wait for your starfish float every week,it's amazing,I think you could go for hours on your back.It always makes us grin.

So,back to the push and glide moment.

You and your classmates had all done one push and glide across the pool when Diane said "Chips can you demonstrate push and glide please. Everybody watch Chips."

Well your reaction was precious.You looked around as if you were thinking what me,really me... and then you quickly ascertained it was you Diane was talking about and you pulled your goggles down and did it beautifully.

Was I proud or was I proud! Little boy I was amazeballs proud of you.

Two and a half years of swim lessons and your first time to demonstrate. It won't be forgotten in a hurry Chips,I can tell you that for sure.

Little things like that sink into your consciousness,I think, and set a good train of thought going.

And I want to end with some things that make me smile about your swimming journey Chips.

Things which define you and probably me too,your partner in crime along the wet,slippery,fraught but amazing journey that is swimming.

The Swim Hat How much do we fight with the swim hat Chips!?! Yep we put talcum inside it,does that help,probably but not enough! We laugh,growl,melt on the floor with utter frustration and desperation when I put that swim hat on you. I can't do it! It just bounces off your head. Oh the pain,yours and mine. And the laughter on Sharkys face when he comes to watch you swim,I see it run through his head "Roll up,roll up and watch the spectacular fail of the swim hat" he has a grin as wide as the Mersey! And sitting here I can nearly smile at his grin but when I'm in those hot sweaty changing rooms boy is it hard not to growl at his grin.

The Showers Another painful process! This swimming lark is full of pain isn't it! But you know what they say,no pain,no gain...

It would help my dear Chips if when showering you actually stood in the shower. You know, under the shower, yep... where the water is. That would be helpful,it might even get the job done,but you don't stand under the shower,do you.
Oh no. Instead you chose to stand outside the showers for most of the time,listening to everyone's conversation and having a right good old chinwag with the parents. So you go through the motions of showering,shampoo on head,shower gel rubbed on your body but you spend most of the shower time not actually immersed in the water!
And today I touched your skin as you ducked in and out of that shower and it was freezing I knew the shower was cold but I didn't know it was that cold.
No wonder your face scrunched up so tightly tonight. You truly can stand freezing cold water!

The Starfish Float This makes us all smile! Chips is amazing at floating like a starfish. He can go for ages just lying on his back and quite a long time lying on his front. It's as though he hasn't got a care in the world,he just zones out and floats and floats,usually his teacher has to call his name before he gets up or I think he would float there for ages. 

Jumping In Once upon a time Chips didn't like to jump in - at all. I can remember the early days when Jenny used to have to hold your hand and you were so tentative stood on the side. It was painful to see,I think I went through the wringer nearly as much as jumper did!
Not know though! Now both of us are laughing. Well kind of! Me....because apart from the worry that you are going to bump your head on the side of the pool as you fling yourself into the water,it's great to see you jump with such joy and abandonment. Oh and the fact that quite often you soak all the parents as you splash into the water with such force that the water splashes out of the pool and gets whoever is sat on the side. Usually they laugh. And smile at me with raised eyebrows as if to say 'that's your kid who's just splashed us y'know. and I grin back,albeit a touch apologetically and nod as in 'Yep thats my boy,soz'
On a hot afternoon it's not as bad,in the winter I think it will be not quite so funny!

The Changing rooms Yikesy Spikesy the changing rooms!Possibly the worst part of swimming.So hot and confined and slippery. Hot sticky damp bodies trying to get changed or dressed,I find them horrendous and whilst usually I have quite a lot of patience it drains away pretty fast when Im hot and bothered in a confined space faced with a little boy who is sometimes growly after a long day at school and then a tiring swim session,not the best combination in the world.

So thats my stance on swimming,three cheers for swiiiiiiiiming!Long may it rule!


  1. I loved this post, Jess. Such struggles to overcome, and yet he is... he's getting there and doing it, how much pride and love go into this post... and just for the record, I love the starfish float too! :-)

    1. Dear Josie thanks for the comment,yes he is overcoming it,isnt he,its taking its time but it is coming and yes Im unbelievably proud of him and his achievements. The starfish float is amazing!It never fails to make me smile...every,single,time. I turned to my dad this week and said 'look at his starfish' soppy arent I! #starfishrule

  2. Awww I can feel your pride shinning through in this post, well done Chips ( I hate the changing rooms too!) xx

    1. Morning Lou,Iam so proud of what Chips has achieved with his swimming,it makes me fizz inside whenever I think about it. I have a little swimmer - wow!
      The changing rooms are just torture rooms in disguise :-)

  3. This is lovely - completely understand why you are so rightly proud of Chips :) I am so with you on the changing rooms - stabbed my foot in the foot bath of doom whilst we were on holiday in June! Thank you for linking to PoCoLo x

    1. Hiya Vic,thank you for your comments about Chips, 'Iam' so proud of this kid!As for the changing rooms....hell holes designed to bring misery to all parents #fact! x