Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Swim lessons

So when I signed the little man up for swim lessons, I had a very romantic notion about how it would be. I pictured us splashing around in the warm pool, enjoying every second of the 30 minute class, and then head home all refreshed and thrilled with ourselves. Maybe this delusion is typical for a first time mom. I don't know. All I know is that my swim class fantasy never plays out like that.

The little man does seem to enjoy being in the pool and splashing around (that is once he moves past the fact that the water is FREEZING). But our favorite part is probably the hot shower we stand under when the class is done.

I'll just run through the pre and post swim class routine from today because it's pretty representative of what happens each week.

Pre swim class:

We search for a street parking in the snow with c fussing in the back. I run to the pay for park meter, get my ticket, run back to the car, put it on the front dash, grab the little man, all our stuff and run inside. We have five minutes to change and get into the pool. For another mother that might be cutting it close. But as someone who often seems to run through life behind schedule, I feel early to this class! I mentally pat myself on the back.

Last week, I forgot a towel (imagine how that went down). So this morning, I meticulously packed our swim bag while c ate his breakfast and placed it by the door. (I am SUCH an organized mom). The only problem is that once we got to the pool and I went to dress the little man in his suit, I realized that somehow I'd forgotten to pack a swim diaper. (YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME). The way I see it, there are two choices at this juncture:

1. Leave

2. Put on his suit without a swim diaper and risk a floaty. Well, feeling lucky and refusing to leave after getting out of the house, finding a spot, paying for parking etc.... I decide to risk it. No pool blow out, thank God!

Post swim class:

We race to the warm showers and hang out there until we are the last ones in the shower. Bad move because now there are no more dressing rooms available. Why not just change out in the open? Well because it's a coed dressing room. However, I decide to start changing the little man out in the open while we wait for a room. Just as I get his undershirt and shirt on a room opens up. YES! I scoop him up and off we go, baby on on hip, bag, purse and coats hanging off my arms. Although I never seem to be able to coordinate getting both of us dressed and out the YMCA door, today I am feeling good about how this is unfolding. After all, c is almost dressed.

Uh, oh I spoke too soon. Well, now the little man's undershirt and shirt are soaked because I carried him against my wet swimsuit. Okay....no problem. I'll just take it off. I better get my clothes off too so as not to continue getting him wet. I'm also trying to avoid allowing him to crawl around because the floor is gross. So there I am naked, squatting and trying to get a diaper on him. Then I realize that there is a gap between the door and the floor so by squatting, I've pretty much ensured that the rest of the room can see me naked.

No problem- just move on.

I manage to dress myself and decide to forgo clothes for the little man and just put his naked body in his snowsuit (with a diaper of course). Feeling like I've just played an exhausting game of twister we go to leave. But I notice that all the other mom's seem to have dressed their kiddos fine. And I don't see any other naked babies in snowsuits. How to they do it?!

We walk outside to the car, and I reach into my purse for my keys which I remembered that I'd put in a special spot for easy access (what an organized mom I am!).

The keys aren't there. I can't seem to remember which special place in my purse I put them at for easy access so I dig and dig and dig. Meanwhile, c's snowsuit has gaped open a bit and it's obvious to all passing by that I have a naked baby under this coat. Would this be something child services could be called in about? Nooooo.

Found the keys! Moving on!

I get him in the car, get myself in the car and as we pull out I realize how EXHAUSTED I am from this ordeal. I also feel frustrated with myself yet again, because sometimes it seems that no matter how hard I try, I can't get organized.

I wonder if swim lessons are even worth this hassle.

BUT, during the 30 minutes we were in the pool, between c's shivers, there was a moment. We were playing a game where us mom's would toss a rubber ducky and then help our babies swim to retrieve them. C LOVED it. When I threw the duck, he smiled and laughed and started kicking and pulling through the water. He was laughing so hard and smiling so big, that I thought my heart might melt right there in that freezing pool.

So, if I have to endure a snow storm, chicago city parking, wet yucky YMCA floors, people seeing my naked butt, risking a floaty in the pool, or the stares that come from taking my kid outside naked under his snowsuit, if I need to stop at starbucks to get a venti coffee just to stay alert the rest of the day, then that is what I will do.

Seeing that moment of pure, innocent, joy on your kids face somehow makes it all worth it.

Somehow, it cancels out all the craziness. And how crazy is THAT?

No comments: