Life lessons from the pool
As the clear sky reflected off the deep blue of the water, I glided through the pool in a quiet calm. I was alone, enjoying my old familiar routine after an entire year without access to the pool.
Yup, you guessed it- due to Covid.
I couldn’t believe how much I missed it! What’s funny is- during those years where I went swimming 3 or more times a week; I remember thinking, “this isn’t even doing me any good, I’m not losing any weight”. Little did I know how good it was for my sanity, and also how it actually had maintained my weight. I’ve gained a good 15 lbs in one year AND almost went off the DEEP end of crazy.
So, in my reminiscent, exhilarating state of a refreshing solo swim, I hear the gate open. I should say that I felt the presence before the gate even opened. The lady with the Hawaiian Print skirts.
She swooped in – with all her glory- her glory being about a hundred bags & towels and precious water bottle and the boy. Ahh- I remember her.
I don’t know many people in my apartment complex and zero names, but I know “characters”.
The people you see walking….. Walking their little dog, their big dog….those who you see jogging in the skimpy clothes. To keep cool of course. They’re all characters in my world of life.
Very quickly it became clear as she started barking orders to THE BOY, that she was the one who liked to bark orders & sneers to THE BOY. The boy being about 13 by now; I remember him at this very pool as a 10 yr old, then 11; excited to be at the pool, wanting to please his mom, but only getting negative feedback with not only her words but the tone of them.
She seemed irritated with him. Always. I’m a pretty good judge of brat- factors in kids & this kid didn’t strike me as one who fit the annoying part. Which is surprising because it seemed she took every opportunity to make him feel like shit.
With my solace obviously ruined, I packed up as quickly as I could. I wanted to scream as I went out the gate:
"Do you realize that you only have maybe one or two years left before he isn't going to give a rats- ass about you or coming to the pool?!!!!
Do you realize that if he feels like he never lives up to your expectations, hes going to find someone or someone or some THING that accepts him?
Do you know the first time he tastes alcohol or hits his first joint or tries heroin, it's going to feel like he found heaven to fill up all his empty holes of inadequacy & self-worth?
He's going to start a love affair with an illusion - albeit a powerful tangible one- that 'might' take a lifetime to get over".
But I kept silent.
I walked out of the gate with my measly bag & foam water weights & headed to the safety of my car where I could check messages from my first born son who’s in purgatory county jail………..