Since I was about 15, I have been teaching swimming lessons.
Oh, swimming lessons.
Anyone who has ever taught swimming lessons can relate:
- Kids who are terrible at listening but are really funny so you still love them to pieces
- Secretly having favorite kids, except that it's not that secret because you let them go first every time
- Parents staring you down from the side of the pool
- Trying to keep 3 year olds on or near a step for 45 consecutive minutes (whoever thought that would work was funny)
- Wishing you could just play the whole time because the kids are cute
- Freezing from the second you get in the water until after you've sat in a hot bathtub for 45 minutes after it's over
- The kids who spend 90% of class asking what we're doing because their head was underwater the whole time you were talking
- The kid who won't let go of the wall, go under water, has to go to the bathroom every 6 minutes, etc.
- Bending your leg to cover your internal organs when kids kick off you from the middle of the pool to swim back to the wall
- Failing at covering said organs and almost vomiting
- Kids who are positive you live at the pool because you teach their swimming lessons then you are on lifeguard duty when they come back to swim later that day
- Trying to keep your hair dry so you don't completely turn into a popsicle (I admit it)
- Attempting to teach rotary breathing (maybe I'm the only one who always fails at this on day one)
- Ending kick board wars between boys
- (or not really caring that boys are having kick board wars except that you will get in trouble if you don't end it)
- When practicing jumping in, they don't wait until you say it's their turn. They just go ahead and jump. On you.
- Seeing kids you teach in public and they have no idea who you are because you're wearing clothing
But seriously, it has its golden moments. A couple of highlights over the years:
George, age 5, came swimming during the day after lessons that morning. It was a cold day, but he was showing me his tricks off the diving board.
George: I'm freezing!
Me: Go get your towel!
George: No! Real men don't use towels.
Alex, age 6:
Alex: Do you have any babies?
Me: Not yet.
Alex: You should make some.
Me to class of 3 year olds: Do you guys have any questions?
(Every hand goes up): I went to the zoo yesterday.
Have you seen the Emperor's New Groove?
I'm being a dinosaur for Halloween.
Nathan, age 4:
Me: Did you have a good Halloween?
Nathan: My dad ate all my candy.
It's a party, really. Even though they kick water in your face the majority of the time, some of those kids are just beyond adorable. THAT is what makes it worth it!
|Teaching Kanani's brother David to swim when I was 18|