This picture was taken last spring during our Disney trip, but it's relative to this little story. My Ladybug loves the pool. She could swim all day long, and even when we're in Disney World with all the amusements and attractions, the pool is still her favorite.
So I signed her up a couple of weeks ago for swimming lessons. I thought she would love to go swimming in the middle of winter once a week. So far, she's gone twice and she's not all that enthused. She thought it was all going to be fun and games, with her inflatable wings on (we call them swimmies). Needless to say, there's been a lot of crying going on during these 30 minute lessons.
I also have to preface the point of this story with the fact that I cry at everything... at the drop of a hat, I will shed a tear. Happy, sad, whatever, I cry. My husband has season Knicks tickets, and I even cry at most games when they sing the National Anthem. At the Shamu show in Disney, I cried the entire time because the sappy theme of the show was to Believe in Your Dreams
Anyway, I've found Ladybug's swimming lessons to be another moment that I cry every time, for so many reasons. First of all, my little girl is growing up. She's getting so big, so smart and eventually will be so independent. Soon she'll be able to swim on her own. Also, there is this young girl, Katie, who is Ladybug's swimming instructor. She's probably about 19 or 20 years old, but she's very good. This week, when Samantha slipped on the steps and went under, it was kind of scary to watch. Of course, she was fine and really only went under up to her eyeballs but it was scary for both she and I (I am in the waiting area and can watch everything through a big window). But watching the way Katie was so gentle with her, had tears running down my face.
Katie calmly picked her up, held her and gently went around the pool. I saw her talking to her, wiping her tears and her hair from her face. Every time she put her hair behind her ears with such great maternal instinct, I had tears running down. Katie never seemed to falter, and always had a sweet smile. It was as if she knew Ladybug forever, perhaps as a member of her own family, and was just telling her everything was ok.
So for the rest of the lesson, Ladybug was not happy. She was scared but Katie never let her go after that, and for the most part, Ladybug was leaning back on Katie's chest just kicking her feet. But I felt it was progress. With great angst on her face, Ladybug followed her instructions and was trusting her, even though I could see she was really scared.
When I went out to pick her out of the pool, she saw me and cried, the kind of a cry someone feels when their scared in a situation, and then see a parent. The emotions let go, and you just want to be held and cry on their shoulder. I said to Katie, "You were so sweet with her." And my eyes started to well up. I couldn't even say good-bye to her as I walked away because I was kind of embarrassed of my own sappiness.
So even if I'm having a rough or lonely or not-so-great week, I still see beauty in these moments. It reminds me how wonderful it is to be a mother and to be home with Ladybug all day. And how thankful I should be to not miss them.
Labels: beautiful things, ladybug