Monkey has been having swimming lessons for a while now. I used to get on the pool with him and it was fine, then the pool shut for a year. Now he’s a big 4 year old boy, he gets to have swimming lessons without me. This all started quite well, but then we had the ‘cling on’ effect. All of the other children would follow the instructor round to the side of the pool. They’d all quite happily leave their parents. Not Monkey, I’d have to go pool side with him clung to my leg, literally. Then the process of peeling him off me would begin. Over a few weeks I finally persuaded the instructor that she or her assistant really should just take him from me as soon as possible. It was better for everyone, especially for Monkey. Last week we saw a change, saw some bravery at the swimming pool.
Please don’t think I’m an awful mother. Making Monkey do something he doesn’t want to do. Trust me, as soon as I’ve left and walked to the viewing area, Monkey is fine. He enjoys himself. He just struggles to leave me. I don’t know why. If he was crying and really upset, then I wouldn’t be taking him to lessons any more. But he’s not. He knows I always come back, he can even see me at the swimming pool. But every week is the same. Until last week. It was Easter Monday, Daddy P was actually around, and had never seen Monkey at a swimming lesson. So Daddy P was coming with us. I did toy with the idea of him changing Monkey and me going straight to the viewing area. But that could have gone terribly wrong for a number of reasons. So, we waved Daddy P off, showed him where to sit and I got Monkey changed as normal.
We were really early, not quite sure how that happened, but it gave Monkey time to get used to being at the swimming pool. He could see Daddy P. That was exciting. Now remember Monkey, Daddy P has come to see you swim and to see your bravery at the swimming pool. Can you sit with the other children today? Without clinging on to Mummy? No! That told me.
The instructor arrived, right everyone come and sit down by the pool please. Monkey held on tightly, come with me Mummy. So off we went, we were first in line, he wasn’t happy about it. Monkey why don’t you sit down and show everyone else where to sit today. I didn’t expect him to listen to me for a minute. But he did. He sat down, he let go of my hand. The instructor and I looked at each other, I legged it! A little bit of bravery at the swimming pool.
Not only did he sit with all the other children, he then proceeded to get in the pool, the correct way, by himself. He knows how to do this, has done it lots of times when he was younger in his lessons. Has done it lots of times when we’ve gone swimming together. Has not done it once since starting big boy lessons. But there he was, another bit of bravery at the swimming pool. Or was it just having Daddy P there? Let’s hope not!!