When I was young, I had a fear of water that I’ve never quite got over. In fact, if I had my way, I’d never see the inside of the swimming baths again but as a parent, I’m determined that my two will be a lot more confident in the water and will enjoy swimming a lot more than I ever did. Which is why, once a fortnight we go to the local swimming baths together.
Miss Frugal has had lessons with the school and is really confident in the water, she has her 50 metre award and could probably swim more but I don’t think she really sees the point – ‘Why do I have to just swim up and down when Master Frugal gets to jump in and splash?’.
Master Frugal has no fear of the water at all and although he can’t swim properly yet, he can swim almost the breadth of the pool underwater and hold his breath under water for so long that I have to pull him up as I’m scared he’s going to drown 😉
I make it a point of knowing how far they can swim, how confident they are and what they are not yet capable of.
So, when it comes to getting an invitation to a swimming party, I know that Miss Frugal can go in the pool without me in there with her and without any arm bands. I also know that Master Frugal can’t go in the pool without his arm bands and plenty of adult supervision.
To me, that’s just common sense as I suspect it would be to most parents.
At a swimming party we were invited to last weekend, I was shocked when a child who had been dropped off in the reception of the swimming baths (the parents didn’t even stay while he got changed) almost drowned as the hosts of the party had not been made aware that he could not swim by either the parents or the child. The invite we were sent asked that an adult accompanied the child into the pool if they couldn’t swim. It also said that none swimmers MUST wear armbands.
This poor child had been left with no close adult supervision and no armbands, he wasn’t given any boundaries and ended up falling off in the deep end and going under the giant inflatable. Luckily the lifeguard noticed and sounded the alarms (scaring some of the other children) and dived in to rescue the child who was genuinely terrified by the time he was pulled out. Scary stuff!
After witnessing this, I’ve told my kids that we won’t be having a swimming party any time soon. I don’t want the responsibility of looking after the children whose parents just want to drop them off for a few hours peace and have no regard for their safety!
Oh and I do have another reason why we won’t having a swimming party – the whole wearing a swimsuit in front of the other parents puts me off more than a little 😉