Thursday, May 9, 2013

Just keep swimming

The weather is finally warming up and I can hardly wait for Allie to have her first pool experience. She already loves splashing water in the bathtub so I'm sure she'll love playing in a pool.

Growing up, we had a pool in our backyard. Talk about FUN.

We would play games like Colors (the game where you swim for your life as if you were being chased by a shark) or Marco Polo (the game where you try to sneak around the pool and also swim for your life as if you were being chased by a blind shark). There were Chicken Fights which was basically wrestling in water which does not sound fun at all right now.

We would also pretend to be mermaids (since this was just around the time that The Little Mermaid was out in theaters). It was basically fight over who got to "be Ariel" and then swim around with your legs together wearing flippers pretending you were indeed half-fish, half-human. I distinctly remember trying to flip my hair coming out of the water like she did when she breaks the surface as a human. It never looked quite like it did in the movie.

I remember my mom would set out chips and after about 10 minutes, the whole bowl would be soggy because we'd all run over after just getting out of the pool and grab chips while dripping water from everywhere.

My hair would turn green from the chlorine. I would have a permanent tanline from whatever my swimsuit was that year. Every dive was done as if you were being watched by Olympic judges. Underwater tea parties were fun for no apparent reason. Hanging off of the diving board was fun until my dad broke it diving into the pool and that was the end of that.

Running was banned because "you could slip, fall, crack your head open, drown, and die." Also you were NEVER allowed to do Dead Man's Float because how could an adult tell the difference between trying to float and actually being dead?!?!

A pool can bring so much joy to a child. But also, so many irrational fears. Like sharks in the deep end. ESPECIALLY at night. It didn't help that when I was about 7, I caught a glimpse of a movie that we weren't supposed to be watching (but all the big kids were watching it). All I remember is an alligator that was living in a sewer ends up in someone's pool. Happy kids having a birthday party and one gets thrown in the pool... needless to say, I was scarred for life.

On second thought, maybe I'll just keep Allie in the bathtub.