||[May. 25th, 2014|05:40 pm]
I went to the pool for the second time today. Because it's the weekend, the main pool had no lap lanes, just one rope dividing the shallow end from the deep. The therapy pool had lap lanes, but there were at least two or three people in each one. So I decided to get in the main pool and just walk back and forth across the pool--short distances, but at least I was at a consistent depth. The first five minutes I was stuck inside my brain, trying to coach myself to a "this is recuperation; this is good" mentality. |
And then an amazing thing happened. My body remembered how much I used to love to play in the pool. When I was in junior high, I would walk almost 2 miles every day that I could to go to the public pool. I didn't swim laps. I played tag and Marco Polo with friends; I dove off the low and high boards, climbed out and dove again dozens of times in a row; I just swam around for the fun of it.
When I was in high school and my first two years of college, we lived in an apartment complex that had a small pool. I was in that pool all summer. There were lots of teen girls who went to the pool and laid in the sun to tan, but not me. I swam and swam and swam. I would go by myself and toss a rock in, dive to the bottom to retrieve it, and toss it again. I would pretend to be a mermaid. When I was in college and working and not getting home until late in the evening after the pool was closed, I would climb over the fence and swim anyway.
Somewhere along the way, swimming turned into a goal-oriented activity--how many laps, how long. I got away from that some when we were in Hawaii and swimming in the ocean, but today I suddenly felt reconnected with the smell of chlorine meaning fun. I bobbed along, back and forth across the pool, eventually joined by another woman who couldn't get a lane and decided to try my workout instead. We laughed and chatted, and it was like those 15-minute friendships that you have when you're a kid on a playground: nothing lasting, but gratifying in the moment. There were a gazillion little kids playing in the water park, sliding on the slide, having fun. And I got to be one of them.
I feel so much more at peace with myself, because I found the fun again. On weekdays I will be relegated to the lanes, but I'm going to stop avoiding the weekends at the pool. I'm going to go and have myself some fun.
How delightful! I've found the same thing with biking some days. Last night, biking home through the dark city, with the wind in my face and the burn in my quads was so great.
I don't have time to go to a pool right now and I could go to the one at my college. I can't swim because I can't seem to float. I know it seems ridiculous, but my Daddy couldn't float, either.
However, I LOVE playing in the pool - bobbing up and down, the buoyancy, feeling like I'm lighter - and I know I'd lose weight if I went.
It's good that you are having fun. At least I do get to have fun with my dogs!
yay for rediscovering the fun! :)
Having learned to swim last year (I do NOT float well. In that I don't), I am still working my way through the delightful splash around the pool phase - including the fifteen minute friendships you describe.
I'm glad you're having fun with it. :)
I would love to have a pool. Swimming is one of the few physical activities I enjoy, but I rarely do it.
I'm such a Type A, goal-orientated person. That's fine up to a point, but making various activities work can suck the fun out of it. I've learned to recognize this tendency and try to keep it in moderation.
2014-05-27 01:12 pm (UTC)
I wish I had better access to a pool!
You'd think living in Florida I would...
Nah, I just go to the beach.
But yes, just being in the water and having fun is the point half the time.
And diving for pennies! Or just moving around with a story in my head. Man I miss swimming.