Sunday, September 9, 2012

Swimming Lessons

Tuesday I went to the first class of my 8 week adult swimming lessons at the YMCA. 

adult_swim_lessons.jpgLet me first say that, yes I know how to swim and have been swimming since doing lessons as a kid. (I made it past red, but my older brother couldn't pass maroon and the thought of being in the same swimming level as his lil'sister was enough to make him want to stop going, and while my mom is super-amazing she was not a Super-Mom by today's standards and wasn't about to drive us all over town to different lessons - she ended up doing this anyways, so that was the point that I stopped swimming lessons, too.)

So, I can swim but I wanted to take some lessons. Mostly I wanted to get some coaching because I'm sure the technique - if you can even call it that - that I've developed over years of sporadic beach and lake trips isn't the most effective. And I want to get my shoulders & butt nice and strong for the trip that I'm planning for November (more to come about this soon - I promise!).

I've been excitedly telling everyone about doing this for the past week and then it's the day of the first class and I almost didn't go. I know it sounds crazy, but here's the thing running through my head that almost stopped me: 

I'm too fat and should NEVER be seen in a swimsuit. 

Seriously, this thought would not leave me alone. I love my body in how it gets me through my days & what I do; I love that I am shaped like a woman, full of those sharp curves that are so delicious; I love that it sees me into & out of all sorts of situations relatively unscathed. And yet, the first thing that popped into my head as I was getting ready to leave home that morning is that I don't want anyone to bear witness to the fatness of my ass, especially underwater! I'm not even kidding, I wish I were.

The only thing that kept me from bailing was the phrase that we've heard a million times from all directions: TO GET DIFFERENT RESULTS, YOU MUST TAKE DIFFERENT ACTIONS.  So, I put aside my fears and put a smile on my face and faked a sweet self-confidence I wish I possessed. And here's what happened:

I had so much fun! I met a girl (prettier, but less comfortable) and chatted easily until we got into the water and I turned into a fish. I was amazed at how easily my body remembered how to move and at how quickly I forgot about my body issues. Thinking about my stroke, my kicks, my breathing, my coordination, really left no room in my head to be worried about how my ass looked or if that hottie was checking me out. 

By the time I hit shower I didn't have to fake any self-confidence. It wasn't that I suddenly thought that "I AM THE BEST THING EVER," it was that I no longer cared about how anyone was judging me. I was learning to swim, dammit! and, you know what, I don't need to look like a super-model to do it

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