There is no doubt about it, being a parent is a challenging, ever-changing occupation.
Some days it feels like you are climbing a mountain in a blizzard and you are getting nowhere fast, but then there are the days it all comes together and the kids do something that makes you sing from the summit.
Yesterday was one of those days.
Isaac has been training with a local swimming club since January this year and the improvement in his swimming is staggering, but we have had one stumbling block – he didn’t want to race.
Isaac doesn’t like new situations, so when we signed him up for his first club gala just before the summer break, the noise and the sheer number of people there, terrified him and he refused to go anywhere near the pool.
The frustrating bit for us, as his parents, was the fact that during his lessons they often do relay races and he is the one with the biggest grin on his face as he powers down his lane.
A few weeks ago, we asked Isaac if he would like to try again and he nervously said yes. We booked him in for two short races and have been building up to the day. All seemed to be going fine until we got to the pool and again the nerves set in.
It is hard seeing your child upset and anxious, but we finally managed to persuade him to get changed and to come and sit poolside with his friend so he could see what was going on.
I will admit that it was a noisy and intimidating atmosphere, with lots of whistles blasting and horns going off to start the races. Not something that they are prepared for in lessons and when it was time to jump in for a warm up, there was no way he would get into that pool.
When asked why, all he could say was he “didn’t want people to watch me“.
I have to admit at this point we gave in and decided to head home, but when we got to the car he got upset again because he wanted to try.
Back in we went and we waited and waited for his heat. I was anxious he would freeze again, but he had a new determination about him and even when they said he would be swimming in lane one (he trains in lane five or six), he didn’t seem fazed – even telling me to go to the other side of the pool so I was closer.
He did it!!
He swam both races with no wobbles and no tears and he got his first times.
50m Freestyle: 56:56
50m Breaststroke: 1:20.58
Best of all, he loved it and can’t wait for the next meet!!
As for us – we are proud as punch, although is has cost us a new Swim Bournemouth hoody and t-shirt with his name on!!