While Boy-o is at school on Tuesday's, Girlio and I have started her first swimming lessons. Now - I'm pretty relaxed about the business of swimming "lessons" for the 15 month old set. For me, it's mostly about getting your child introduced to the water, playing around, trying out a float or two, playing with some water toys. For some folks, however, the business of toddler swimming lessons is quite serious. They undertake it with such zeal it appears as though they might expect their child to be the next Michael Phelps within the year (pot dabbling notwithstanding, natch). Simmer down folks. They're toddlers. Pretty sure they can't yet be recruited for the Olympic team.
And our swimming instructor this go round seems quite intent on the business of dunking children. A lot. Yes, yes, I know that they say that the more you get your babies used to dunking the less the more they get used to it, etc. blah etc. blah. And I can get behind a dunk or two. But every song, every game we underake in this half hour swim lesson results in one or multiple dunks or water face plants of some variety. And my Girlio, she does not like the dunks. Not one bit. So each lesson, we try it once and if she doesn't want to do anymore, we don't do anymore. It's simple enough for me. She has years and years of swimming lessons ahead of her to put her face in the water. I'm not going to make her cry her first go round because some 20 year old swim instructor thinks I should. Because I think it's much more important for her to learn to enjoy and feel comfortable in the water than to feel anxious that I'm going to stick her head under water every five seconds. And the instructor doesn't seem to really appreciate my perspective.
Every class, she creates a water fountain with a hose that the kids are supposed to swim through, and if the parents don't put them 'through' the stream of water, she'll raise it so the kids (and parents) get splashed. It's really annoying on a couple of levels. 1) I should get to say when and whether my kid gets her face splashed or dunked, and 2) I really don't appreciate getting my face splashed, my hair soaked, and my glasses all mucky (particularly by someone other than my child!). This is my kids' swimming lesson, not mine. So - after a few times through the hose, we 'accidentally' splashed her back. Ooooooooops. Sorry. Were you trying to stay dry?
And then, I guess because there are a few parent dunk resisters, the instructor went through kid by kid, trying to lift them and dunk them back to their parents. Well, my Girlio, after watching her do this to a couple of kids, got lifted up for her turn, stuck her face in the face of that instructor and said her loudest, boomiest, sternest baby voice: "NOOOOOO!" Every eye in the pool turned to look as the instructor handed her right back to me.
That's my girl