Emma completed two full weeks of swimming lessons last Friday and I am very happy to report that the lessons were a success! We have taken lessons at Miller Swim School for the last 3 summers (starting when Emma was 17 months old) but this year we decided to try out ORU swim lessons. It was recommended to us by a good friend and I’m so glad we went! Emma had to miss the first day because it was on Memorial Day when we were out of town but it didn’t seem to matter much that she missed. They placed her in a class pretty quickly on Tuesday and I’m so thankful for her teacher, Jane Ann, who was a perfect fit for Emma. She was very sweet natured but also firm- which Emma really needed. The first day was kind of rough. Emma cried and reached out for me pretty much the entire time. I found out later that Emma had to go to the bathroom and was afraid to ask her teacher and she was also cold in the water. So, from that day on we made sure that she went to the bathroom right before she got in the pool! The 2nd day, I begged Robin to come with us to help reassure Emma so I could chase Foster. Robin came and Emma did fabulous during the lesson. Then on Thursday they had their first “going off the diving board” lesson and Emma flipped out- literally. She was running away from the teacher while walking to the diving board and at one point was flailing and flopping around in the arms of her sweet teacher! I made the mistake of getting there early that day and she had watched about 10 kids cry while going off of the diving board and she said to me, “Mom, I’m not going to ever go off the diving board, ok?” She did go off the board that day- with a little push for her teacher- and crying the entire time. Friday she cried again when they went to the diving board but a little less hysterically! Progress!
Monday Robin took Emma to swim lessons by himself because my Mom had surgery that day. He sent me a text message during the lesson with a picture of Emma with a huge smile on her face and his message said, “All smiles after the diving board.” Emma is such a Daddy’s girl- she feels so safe when he is with her.
The 2nd week Emma did great. She actually looked forward to going off the diving board, she put her face in the water a ton, and even swam to her teacher on her own the last two days. I was so proud of Emma. Here are some pictures from the 2 weeks.
Can you see the nerves on her face in this picture before her lesson?
My friend suggested that we get some goggles for Emma after she had such a rough time the first day. She was complaining about the water going in her eyes when kids splashed and kicked. She loved her goggles and loved being able to see under water!
They do a couple minutes of “exercises” on the deck before they get in the water so they won’t pull a muscle (this really cracked me up!) Emma pretty much refused to the exercises every day. She just stood and watched the other kids do them. That girl really has a mind of her own!
Emma with her teacher, Jane Ann. There were 5 kids in her class. She knew Kinley from church and Bryce from school.
Robin told Emma to give us a thumbs up to show us that she was having fun- she really likes giving us signals- it’s kind of like we have a little secret form of communication and she loves that!
Waiting to jump to her teacher from the side…
Shivering waiting to go off the diving board. :)
Kinley and Emma- love the goggles!
Free time- kick board races!
I’m thankful that swim lessons are over- I feel like I should have lost 10 pounds throughout the two weeks (but I didn’t.) To get to the ORU pool you have to park in a lower parking lot and walk up a humongous hill which really wouldn’t be that awful IF I was in good shape! I broke out in a sweat every day as I pushed Foster in his stroller up that hill. Then when you get in the pool room, it’s about 100 degrees with a very sticky humidity- thus I sweat again. Add to that the stress of Emma being on edge emotionally, and the stress of entertaining Foster in his stroller which usually meant keeping his supply of food continuous, I worked up quite a sweat every day!
It was all very well worth it. I feel very confident that IF Emma were to accidentally fall in the water somewhere (please Lord, don’t let that ever happen) she would have the basic skills to swim to the top and climb out or to float on her back. That reassurance was definitely worth all of the sweating that I endured. :)