Chlorine fumes: instant nostalgia. I can’t believe she is still doing this. It has been 15 years. Lap after lap, goggles, flip turns swim suits, swimmer’s ear, joint pain, green hair. Wet. Constantly.
It was my life.
And now my daughter is taking the plunge. The cycle of swimming lessons has begun. I am so excited for her. She has her own little Speedo suit and green goggles that she picked out special just for her three year old self. She is so excited! And so am I.
Over and over- lap after lap. Intervals, endurance 1, 2 and 3. warm up. cool down. 800, 600, 400, 200= 2000 yards. Swim, kick, pull, reverse I.M. It is the most perfect, easy work out. I have probably swum the world around. Her, probably three or four times around. I’d like to have those lungs again. That body. That strength, determination and endurance. That loyalty to myself and my team.
Now the laps I “swim” I swim around my children. Flipping around their every move, their messes and needs. Now I cheer for my daughter as she swims with her teacher.
I would love to get back in. I would love to reek of chlorine, to feel the burn in my muscles and know that I am SO alive with every heavy pulse of my heart, counting out the laps with the rhythm of my breath.
My muscles have changed in the last 15 years. Substantially. My muscles now can be found in using my intuition, mothering (hefting babies), health, listening, peacefulness, spirituality and compassion (sometimes). Of course those muscles are still growing. With every hardship and experience that I allow myself to have that is difficult, I know I will become stronger.
And in a lot of ways, these things are just the same as “getting back in”.