Here I am, tap. tapping from the library. I was balancing my laptop on my knees for awhile. Luckily, a cubicle opened up and now I have my own private space and desk. No further need for balancing acts. My knees are not at all reliable as with many of my aging body parts. I must not take things for granted. I must take care of myself. No one else will. It’s not their responsibility.

I finally got back to swimming after many long weeks. The sun comes up early. It’s daylight by 5:30. Why not get moving? Why lounge till noon, not that I ever do. I’ve already had my breakfast. I pack my gym bag and I’m off. It’s 8:30. It will give me plenty of time to get there and change. With luck maybe I will have a lane to myself.

My body sighed as I slid into the warmth of the whirlpool. The aqua fitness class was still in progress. I can enjoy the whirlpool jets and watch the group finish their workout. Next time, I will come earlier and participate in the class for the last 20 -30 minutes before my lane swim. I am sure it will help keep me supple, mellow and maybe sweeter. Every little bit helps. I am feeling a little stale with my aerobics class and need something new. I need invigorating.

The swim was divine. I almost had a lane to myself. More people came so I had to share with another woman. She was very kind and considerate. She told me I could keep my lane and she would share with the gentleman. That was after witnessing me swimming almost over top of him. I was doing my backstroke and couldn’t see behind me. He was slower than I thought. I was faster than I realized. I felt this kick with the legs on my back. I did a quick flip over to my stomach to maneuver out of his way. Then I flip back and carried on with my backstroke. I was not brave enough to flip before but necessity pushed my button. I’m not a good nor confident swimmer. I did this in the deep end. Bravo for me!

I’m learning not to panic when I’m way over my head in everything. I’m letting go of the fear. I’m learning to untangle myself when I run into the ropes. There’s always someone watching for my safety. I need not to be in a wild panic. Panic can drown me. Calmness is my life saver. I have time to breathe in and out, lift one arm up and over my head. Then I can do the same with the other, smoothly and rhythmically if possible. At the same time my legs are trying to do the flutter kick from the hips and with toes pointed. I’m always afraid at first – that I will sink. I start kicking ferociously. I don’t get very far or fast. I get nowhere except dizzy.

So I’ve learned to stop all that. I’ve learned to be still. I’m surprised that I don’t sink but remain afloat. I take a slow breath and slowly swing my arms overhead, one at a time. It can be done. I can be slow. I feel myself pulling forward. I add my kicks, trying to remember to do it from my hips and to point my toes. I’m taking this lesson learned and apply it to whatever over the head situation I find myself in. Stop thrashing/fretting. Be still. Breathe in and out. Swing one arm. Then the other. Kick from the hips. Point my toes. I’m pulling towards shore. No life raft needed.



  1. Interesting post, Lily! Sounds like you’ve made a lot of progress in the pool, glad to read that you’re back at it. I enjoy your explanations of how you’re still learning. I think that’s what life is all about. Des.

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