Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Survival Swim Class

I am so PROUD of my little man and stand amazed at a very special ladies PASSION in life.  Before we left tonight I told her she was a miracle worker and she replied by saying, "No, actually God has given me a gift and when he gives you a gift there is no way to fail."

For several summers now I have wanted both of my children to take a swim survival class, but it has never worked out for us because of our schedules and the huge commitment required.  However, this year I found a wonderful woman that has come up with her own, "the method" that she has been perfecting for 42 years that teaches children to survive and respect the water. 

I can not say enough wonderful things about this sweet woman and her gift that she is sharing with our family.  We finished our second 30 minute lesson tonight and I am blown away by Gavin's progress.  This sweet boy arrived to class on Monday unable to hold his breath under water and now he is able to be thrown in, fall in, flip to his back, rise to the surface of the water, float on his back to the wall, bump his head, grab the wall/surface and flip himself to a safe position.  These lessons are NOT teaching him how to swim, rather to survive if he should fall into any type of water.

I must admit the first class was horrifying to me and I hid behind a bush and bawled my eyes out the entire time (the ugly cry).   I was so thankful that we left Daddy and Emma at home, because I am not sure they could have handled it.  Gavin screamed and struggled with the instructor for the first 15 minutes and then finally settled down.  At that point I was thinking we would never return and could go ahead and be written off as a dropout.

Tonight was completely different and he shed no tears, was so comfortable in the water and even went to the bottom to pick up a dive ring.  AMAZING!!!!  I am just blown away by the progress and what he is capable of doing in a such a short period of time.  Here he is jumping off the rocks, going completely under and surfacing on his back.

I am so thankful that we have made the commitment to have Gavin trained.  It has not been easy since we booked 3 months ago, took a 7:30PM time slot and have to commute 40 minutes each way to get there.  It puts us getting home around 9:00 each evening, but I have to say I have NO regrets.  It has been worth every single sacrifice I have made to get him there. 

Many of you might remember that we lost a 2 year old cousin to drowning in 2007, so we know first hand as a family the importance of water safety.  Please take a moment to watch Sterling's Story if you have not seen it.  We are so proud of his Mommy for sharing their tragedy in an effort to save a life.  This week has made me think of sweet Sterling so much and miss him even more. 

I am looking forward to watching the progress Gavin makes throughout the week.  I have taken tons of videos and perhaps by Saturday I will be able to get one posted.

Gavin Thomas, I am so proud of you sweet boy.  While I hated to hear you scream through the first lesson, I know in my heart that you are learning skills this week that will last you a lifetime. 

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