I'm gonna be honest- I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with swim team. Love the team spirit, love the confidence it's given the kids, and love their coaches. Don't really love the early morning practices, the looooooong meets, or that time when Ella signed me up to do the parent relay. (Really, after doing that, I have a new respect for the way they glide across a pool while people are yelling and chanting and staring at them. I will do that again NEVER).
Okay, so it's mostly a love/"tiny dislike" relationship. As with all aspects of life and raising kids, there's a fair amount of inconvenience. Sometimes it feels like a LOT. But it's so worth it. Last year, I posted about Milo's very first meet- how he was doing a 25 meter backstroke and literally stopped in the middle of the pool, crying. Everyone else had finished. The pool got quiet in a way that pools never should, and I watched him almost wither away in the middle of that lane. It was maybe 10 seconds, but it felt so much longer. His coach came through for him and pushed him to get back on his back and finish- which he did, and I was just so damn proud of him for pushing through when he could have quit. I'll never forget that moment.
Those are the moments that make the ones he's had this summer that much better. The way that Ella and Milo's form and strength have improved in just a year is pretty incredible. They both qualified for Champs (which means another week of early practices. YAY!) And even though I might mutter and gripe to Jake about how I wish I didn't have to still be out the door so early, you better believe that when next Wednesday rolls around, I will be your typical swim mom screaming and yelling at the top of her lungs when it's their heat.
I have a friend whose mantra is, "These ARE the good ol' days." (I got that song stuck in your head now, didn't I?) But it's true. The long summer evenings, the smell of chlorine and sticky popsicles, and yes- even the meets that never seem to end- this is what they'll remember. And maybe I won't miss parts of it, but then again, I just might. <3