Treading Lightly
Treading Lightly

The little mermaid grown up

There are moments in life when you know you are exactly where you should be. You fit in. You are comfortable. It’s wonderful.

My first few kicks off the wall before I come up for a breath always reaffirm this for me. I feel at home in the water. Swimming makes me feel simultaneously graceful and powerful, a true rarity for someone who is as spastic and klutzy on land as I am.

treading lightly swimming

I have always loved to swim, and I spent as much time as possible in the pool growing up. I started swim lessons before I had walking down solidly, and I still have strong memories of learning to swim. To this day I can still tell you my favorite suite (it was green with iridescent patches that I thought made me look like a mermaid while I was swimming) down to the shower curtains in the locker room (fish on a clear background, way cooler than anything we had at home).

treading lightly baby pool swimming

While I always loved swimming, I didn’t compete until high school. I swam for three years and had a blast, but by senior year I was burned out (not just from swimming but from an extremely busy schedule and difficult classes) and not willing to swim for the team after our beloved coach retired and the golf coach subbed all season. I swam when I could in college, but it was more something I would sneak out and do when I was really stressed and needed some space or when the weather was amazing and I just couldn’t pass it up than a part of my typical training schedule.

Since I can’t run, I have been taking advantage of a nearby indoor pool (the perfect setup for my sunburn prone-skin and zero tolerance for cold). While I can’t kick… or really do anything other than gentle flip turns and swim with the pull buoy, it has been great to get back into the pool. It has helped me keep my sanity and remember that I am not one thing. I am not just a runner. I am not just a swimmer. I am not just a writer. I can be or do whatever I want. It was definitely a much needed reminder since not being able to run or olympic lift has left me reeling and desperately trying to figure out who I am outside of the things I love so much.

2 Responses

  1. […] find things that I could do that would give me a great workout without stressing my feet/ankles. I love swimming, but not being able to kick meant that my legs were slowly getting weaker. To combat it, I went on […]

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