If this thing sticks, I'm pretty sure that I will not be repeating this gratitude in ten years. However, today I am thankful for swim meets.
I spent most of the day with my eight-year-old son at his second swim meet. The meets are a full-day affair with a lot of sitting around in between events, so my husband and daughter stayed home. That meant that I spent more than six hours with just my son. Priceless.
I don't often spend time alone with either child and, when I do, we usually have switched to man-to-man defense on a gender basis. That means most of my one-on-one time is spent with my daughter. Today's nearly interminable swim meet was special because it was just my son and me. Sure, my son hangs out some with friends, but he's only eight and is still always fairly nearby.
A few months ago, my son would have volunteered that he's "not really a sports kid," because the standard team sports--soccer and baseball--decidedly were not his thing, either from a talent or interest perspective. Swimming has potential. He is enjoying himself and can see his own improvement. He even seems to be pretty decent at it. Today, he improved both of his event times by a significant margin, earning him one first and one second place. For a professed "non-sports kid," this was a big deal, and I loved seeing the pride and excitement in his eyes.
I'll confess that it's fun for me to have one of my children involved in a sport I understand and enjoy. I swam for years and, though I was never great at it, swimming was my thing. Most of my fondest memories of my teenage years revolve around a swimming pool, so it's fun to return to that environment. Plus, it is one of the few athletic endeavors that I know something about. I can give useful tips and constructive criticism, and it is much easier for me to track my child's progress than it would be in a sport I did not pursue.
Plus, I really like the smell of chlorine.
Four outstanding reasons--some better than others--I am thankful for swim meets. It was a good day.