Thursday, July 7, 2011

Making Dreams Come True

Last week, I posted about M1 getting a surprise invitation from the swim coach to join the swim team.  I talked it over with Oz, M1 talked it over with Oz, we worked out a couple of potential kinks, and in the end, M1 weighed the pros and cons and decided that he'd give it a try.  After all, he said, the worst that could happen would be that he had to wait another year before joining.  I couldn't argue with that logic.

So M1 and I hopped into the van tonight and headed to the pool.  We got there, and I found the coach.  He grinned delightedly when he saw M1 and gave him instructions on where to go.  I went to the observation room and was mentally grateful that I wasn't a nailbiter, because my fingertips would have been bloody and raw.  I watched as the kids set the lane dividers up.  The coach ordered everyone else to warm up while he pulled M1 aside for his tryout - one lap, down and back, freestyle, and one lap, down and back, any other stroke (backstroke is M1's best).  Other rules:  No stopping, no touching the bottom.

He passed.  The look on his face when he ducked under the lane divider and shot me a thumbs-up was priceless. 

I watched for a minute as he tried to work out what everyone else was doing and then ducked out to get the official paperwork done.  By the time I came back, the coach was giving orders and getting the practice formally underway.  M1 was confused at first, and he had a hard time keeping up with everyone else, but he never quit!  Down and back, down and back, he kept going. 

After the practice was over, I caught up with the coach and asked him how M1 had done. 

"He did more than I expected he'd do," was the initial response.  "He'll probably be hungry and tired and really sore tomorrow."

I got instructions on things to work on with him, and then M1 and I headed home.

"Mom?" he said as we walked across the parking lot.


"I honestly didn't think I'd do it.  I had confidence but not that much confidence."

I had to hug him.  I was (am!) so proud.

"You hungry?"  I asked.

"Starving," he said, confused, "but I just ate dinner!"

"Three hours ago, boy, and you've been swimming for an hour!"

"Oh.  [pause]  Can I have food, then?"

I agreed to make him a turkey and Swiss sandwich, "toasted, please."

M1 was silent for a few minutes after that, and I began to wonder if he'd sacked out in the back seat when he spoke.

"I remember when you first told me at level 3 that I had to wait until level 5 to join the swim team," he began.  "And then when [the swim coach] told me I could try out, it was like I was in a maze and had found a shortcut."  He paused.  "Lifting up that divider to join the team was like opening the door to heaven."

I smiled in the dark.  My son, the swimmer.  His dream come true.


Christy said...

Aww...this post had me all teared up! I am so proud of him too! Love that you got to have that experience with him. These are the moments that make life worth living!

rowan said...

Beaming with a mother's pride at this post. So happy for you all.

Sandra (Sam) said...

Congrats to M1!!! I love the way he viewed it... gave me goosebumps!