Swim Instructor Boy

21 May

Photo: ashleigh290, Flickr

Photo: ashleigh290, Flickr

I just can’t tell him no, that cute little 6-year-old of mine, who challenges me every morning to swim 10 more laps than I did the previous day.

It all started with 24. Danny was home sick, and he came with me to the neighborhood pool where I’d planned to clock 20 laps. I jumped in the water, and he set himself up on a lounge chair with a towel. “Do 24!” he instructed, and I did. It was a nice push, and I felt pretty darn accomplished after my workout.

Still sick the next day, he was poolside again. “Do 30!” he declared. And so I did 30. It felt good.

Happily, Danny got better, and he eventually went back to school. It doesn’t matter if it’s a sick day, school day, or weekend, though, because the boy keeps barking orders — 40, 50, 60, 70, and today, I swam 80 laps. It took me an hour to finish, and while I tell Danny I might not be able to keep going up and up and up because of the time commitment (I do have a job, after all), I just can’t seem to refuse him. I guess it’s because I want him to see me accept the task. We like the “never-give-up” mantra in our house, and well, I don’t want him (or Joey) to see me quit or otherwise blow off an opportunity for exercise. My wish is that one day, when faced with something they think they can’t conquer, they remember their momma, chuggin’ through the water, swallowing mouthfuls of chlorine and hanging onto the side of the pool, sucking wind.

There are other reasons I don’t quit: I like having a goal, I like the motivation, and swimming like a crazy person is making me more fit — my biceps are better, my body feels more toned, and soaring through the water has been a great diversion from the running blues.

How far will I go with these laps? I’m not sure. But I do know this: I’ve got plans for 90 tomorrow.

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