When we were waiting to adopt, one of our social workers told us that getting to know our child would be like unwrapping a surprise Christmas gift.
I was thinking of that this week as I watched our 4-year-old son at his swim lesson.
Happy to see Mama, but too busy to pause for a photo
As a child, I could have gone my whole life without entering a pool and been completely content.
Swim lessons? No, thank you.
My parents signed me up year after year and I would barely put my head underwater.
He’s like a little fish, splashing around in the water, putting his head under, kicking his way across the pool, hanging out in the water like a champ.
I don’t mean he’s headed for the Olympics.
I just mean he isn’t afraid of the water.
In fact, he loves it. He exudes confidence. On a surprise visit to his lesson this week I watched as our sometimes strong-willed child did exactly what the coach asked him to do. And he was happy to do it.
It’s all no thanks to me. A few months ago Daniel’s godmother offered to take him for swim lessons. She picks him up, takes him to the pool, makes sure he gets a treat from the vending machine afterward, and then takes him back to preschool.
He feels important and special at a time when his brother is talking about how awesome kindergarten is—and he’s learning how to swim.
He’s also getting really good at peeling Starburst wrappers.
He’s not likely to win any races anytime soon, but as I watched him floating on his back in the pool, I realized he’s already left me in his dust.
Thank goodness for that.