Monday, August 31, 2009
Swimming tonight was fun. We saw teenagers from our ward-they allowed Carolina to ruck it up and played with her to the point that she asked me if any one of them could babysit her sometime. They made her feel like the most hilarious thing since grilled cheese (ok, not the best parallel...) And Adrianna...she made an exciting break through learning to swim. For the past few days she has jumped from the stairs to my arms at a safe distance "swimming." She often wants me to come closer in and I try to push her comfort zone as much as possible. Well she got brave and put her face in and swam to me. Typical to a beginner she didn't have much of any movement propelling her forward. Her body was crooked and she wasn't orchestrating arms and legs together but she had some float to her "stroke" keeping her near the top and was kicking and made it to me. It was so exciting to see her do that. She felt just on top of the world with this great accomplishment. It gave her the confidence to do a perfect back float for about 5 seconds, too. She wanted to try everything she could think of to prove she could swim and was suddenly able to do more than she thought she could. It was the most beautiful swim I had ever seen. Recently I read a book on teaching your baby to swim by Virginia Hunt Newman who taught the first baby, Mary Frances Crosby to pass the beginner American Red Cross test. It was very helpful. Before I had been approaching teaching the kids from the view I had been trained to do which is often an older kid. Instead I learned some redirection to teach a child or a baby enough "swimming" skills to save their life if needed. In other words, doggie paddle and any kind ofr propulsion forward is good enough. This backbone feels like a more natural way to teach, more effective skills can be built upon later. Seeing Adrianna's peak in confidence confirms to me that this is the way to go. She is more willing to try other things now that she has seen some results. You should have seen that ear to ear smile and glow in that little girl's face. I am going to go hug her.