Over the last year it has been awesome watching little girl develop skills in the pool.
She went from climbing around the edge, to jumping into my arms. Next, she would "blast off" the wall into my arms. As time went on she would ask me to step further and further away. I would only go as far as my comfort level but I was realizing that she was getting pretty comfortable with it herself. Over the summer, with life jacket on, she would jump off the dock and swim back to shore. She got really comfortable with the life jacket on. I must say that it is a reassurance to me as well. She would paddle her little arms and kick her legs. She would get where she wanted to go.
Then there was the Teddy Bear Tri. Where she went by herself in the pool with her life jacket on and swam half a length turned around and swam back. That was during the fall.
Lately, as her brother has his swim class we go into the 3 ft 6 pool and play together. She has learned she can float. Then she learned if she kicked while floating she could make it the whole way across the pool(25ft.) She has ditched the life jacket and has gone to holding onto the ball as she kicks her way around. She still blasts off the wall and swims to me and each time she is getting a little bit better. Her butt still seems to sink after 5 feet.
A month ago, grandpa asked if she could swim under water. We had never tried. So the next time in the pool, she tried it. And ever since I think she think's she is invincible in the water. She loves going under and thrusting her arms to push her forward. She went from a little girl that clung on for dear life to pushing me away. Sometimes I get a little nervous as she plunges under in a pool she can not yet touch in. I hover. I follow a foot away at all times. It annoys her. If she stays under for more than 5 seconds I grab hold and pull her up. "Why are you holding me?" or "Let go of me she will say." Finally as we were swimming today I said to her. "I will let you go under to try and get the goggles but if you are under more than 5 seconds I am pulling you up." She agreed.
She is on the brink of being a great swimmer. That she is not afraid of the water is a great thing. It is also a great concern. I have to watch her like a hawk to make sure she is not endangering herself because of her over confidence. Such a line. One mother is watching her child encouraging their child to put their face in the water and another (myself) is making sure her daughter doesn't stay under too long.
I look forward to the day when both of my kids can out swim their mom. Trust me it will probably happen.