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Sunday late, my daughter decided to paint her family room Monday morning. After getting the go-ahead, she asked, “Now who can be as spontaneous as me that I could call for help? I know, my mom!”

Monday morning I met her halfway and rode with her to go get paint and supplies, then we spent the day painting. While we painted, baby girl played and we talked. It was the kind of day that parents hope come true.

As a follow-up to a previous post, I have had my first swimming lesson. Good news—I can blow bubbles. Not so good news—I have no buoyancy. This means if I ever need to stay afloat a looooong time (say a boat capsizes in the middle of Lake Powell and nobody is on the lake—maybe it’s November?) I won’t make it. My teacher / friend illustrated for me the “dead man’s float,” and her biggest trouble was keeping her feet from rising to the surface—not really a problem—but she looked more live than dead. That’s because her center of buoyancy is around her hips. Mine is my lungs. My hips follow my legs to the bottom if I don’t kick. So imagine that boat capsizes and sinks and I’ve got to stay on top the water for some period of time—I’m Okay as long as I can kick; especially if I’m on my back (no breathing worries). But when my legs eventually tire, they will drop, then my hips, then, well, I will end up with the boat after all.

We also tried treading water and what I call “frog swimming” (with my head above water). My success? Not so much. She decided we’d have to come back to those skills.

For now, I’m learning to breathe while moving forward—you know: exhale 2, 3, 4, roll my head and breathe. PUT MY HEAD BACK INTO THE WATER and keep going! If you swim, you probably take these skill for granted; like tying a shoe. My friend gave me an assignment: PRACTICE. I’m not sure how high her confidence was in my ability to learn.

But I’m optimistic. I believe I can learn to at least cross a dark, bottomless pool in a slot hike without panic or assistance. As for when the boat capsizes in the middle of nowhere? For that, I’ll keep my life jacket close. Have you tried to learn something new lately? It’s very energizing. Especially while I’m still in the shallow end.

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