Monday, February 2, 2009

Swimming wonderment <3

Our family joined the YMCA a month ago. As of yet I haven't quite figured out how to get *my* exercise program going, but Kathrynn and I have started some swimming rituals of our own that are fantastic!!!!

Having spent most of my child hood in the water, I am *in awe* of Kathrynn's swimming abilities. She is SO much better then i ever was at her age.....
And it all comes naturally for her, just like all of her passions...... all starting from an authentic place of desire within, and then cultivated from her own desires as well.

I started to teach swim lessons at 15, and then was a swim coach by the time i was 17. Swimming is something i know *a lot* about. So when the issue of how to "teach" Kathrynn how to swim came up, I listened to my inner knowing, and let Kathryn lead the way.

Kathrynn and my relationship is built upon a partnership of listening, trusting, and communicating. Sure, I had moments of wanting to show her the "right" way. And yes, at times I felt external pressures of people wanting me to push her, to urge her to do "more." But I know my child. I know that her learning comes from with in. I offered her information. I demonstrated, to show her what my words meant. And then I let her go.... to explore this thing called swimming, on her own time, in her own way.

I patiently waited until she decided she liked the water, around age 2ish. I patiently waited until she wanted to get her face wet, around 3 and a half. And then I patiently waited until she wanted to try to blow bubbles AND get her face wet, around 4 and a half. And I ignored all the experts who told me that bubbles and floatees are not "authentic" ways of "teaching" a child to swim. I watched her joy and love and *trust* of the water develop, supporting her any way I could along the way.

By 5 and a half, I suddenly had a child who loved to go to our local pool and go off the diving board in the deep end. A child who was going down the "Vertical Drill" ( a 17' drop slide into the deep end). She was a profient swimmer.... almost magically, or so it seemed to me.

Now, at just a week past 6, and with out having swam since the summer months, she is swimming the length of the lap pool- 25 yards. She is diving to the bottom to receive items. She is swimming under water for long periods of time. Treading water, swimming back stroke, swimming free-style...... Yes, I know only a mother's pride and joy can bring about such excitement. And I realize she's not an "advanced" child in the swimming department.
And yet..... She is just amazing to me in her beauty of moving through this world.

I am *in awe* of her raw, authentic love of the world. And I just *love* our life. :)


  1. It's so wonderful how you show how unschooling and trusting the child totally works! (now I just need to incorporate a bit of that in my own life....)

  2. i think it's also hard for our children not to be interested by/in our interests.
    just linked from a mothering thread on definitions. this is one exmple for me where i still find it hard to work out 'true' trust/ unschooling/ RU.

  3. If i get what you are saying, I think that for me its fine to say what *my* interests are. Or even how I might do something. But then its important for me to stop at that, and not expect or even want for Kathrynn to feel the same way.
    I have developed new interests of my own *because* of kathrynn's interests. Likewise, she has developed interests based on my husbands or my interests. But she also has interests that are completely different then either of us.
    So true trust for me is lack of expectation, or control. Hope that makes sense. :)

  4. That's so great that she is swimming! I look forward to when my girls can swim.. probably a few years from now!