Sunday, February 05, 2006

Hey everyone, I'm rich!

Well, not me, but Buck Naked Boy. He has exactly six quarters and one nickle. That's a lot of coin for a five year old. We spent Saturday at the sectional swim meet and booya for him, they had a concession stand. Throughout the day I was handing him dollars, without realizing I was receiving no change back. (I was a little preoccupied losing my voice over the course of 15 or so races) so, it wasn't until arriving at grandma's for dinner and he made his grand announcement, that I discovered his newly acquired treasure. Possession is 9/10ths the law, so he can have the money. Given his pack rat nature he'll count those quarters ad infinitum.

Sectionals were exciting. Hyphen Girl, who had swam with relative indifference during the season poured on the speed and swam her fastest times ever-we find out Tuesday, but chances are good for her to qualify for state in three events. Standing Long Jump has an outside chance of going in one event-not bad for a kid who couldn't swim a 25y in October. Soapinator is in the most populated age group and probably won't go to state this year-but I was so proud of her; she went from panicked -to the point of throwing up - to swimming like a fish and also swam her fastest races all year. If she can get about 10 more yards out of her arms she will be a contender in the ten and under age group next fall.

A note for all the parents/aunts/uncles/grandparents out there: Soapinator struggles in schools and always has. Reading, math, you name it, and it's a challenge. Poor kid would get so flumaxed she stopped trying. I had a hunch swimming might be good for her as the coaches are terrific and she loves to swim. She didn't want anything to do with racing though and as I mentioned went through various stages of fright/crying/vomiting/asthma/panic attacks before each meet. I pretty much shoved her in the pool the first couple of races. She would speed down and back and jump out of the pool like a little puppy dog all wiggly and excited for the next race. No more panic. Finally, by meet four she won her heat and as she came back to me for her towel, I gave her a high five and commented "you're a swimmer now Soapinator!"

"And a reader! I swim and read"

Sure enough, I had a chat with her teacher and she was reading just above grade level. Not only that, but she was volunteering to take her individualized reading tests-a thing that had caused more panic than swim races. You can't buy that kind of confidence which a good sports team will give to your child-

even if I do win the "worst mother of the year award" for throwing her in the pool. What???? I knew she wouldn't really throw up. Oh, thank god she didn't- it takes 24 hours of filtering and shock treatments before it can be swam in again. uugggghhh!

Speaking of swimming-mine is going along fine-I'm covering 3200 yards comfortably about 2X per week. I'm arranging some coaching for our tri club- Chivalry 'Iron' Chris is on the same team and volunteered to look at our mechanics. It would really stink if I was doing it all wrong-that's a lot of untraining, but I'd rather know now than in June when I sink to the bottom of Lake Independance. I know off hand that my propensity for "Spock" hands is not a good thing. Don't ask me why, I have no idea, but I create a "V" with my fingers each time I grab at the top of my stroke. I've tried to focus on closing my hand, but inevitably I end up with Spock again. Maybe it's my closet Trekie trying to escape. I might try taping my hands for next workout.

Any other thoughts?


Keryn said...

Great news about the kids! We're trying to get Duncan involved without pushing him too much - he's not quite 4 yet. But we know how good sports are for kids. I'm glad to see yours are enjoying it so much! Let us know who makes state and all...

nancytoby said...

Those kids just plain ROCK!!!

I've heard (don't know that it's true) that regular aerobic training in those pre-adolescent years is a big key for setting aerobic capacity later in life. So they're going to be awesome athletes for a long, long time!!

Anyway, the real subject of my comment is that I was just noticing that I leave my thumb hanging out all the time when I swim. Like out at a right angle from my other fingers. That's probably not optimal, huh.

Susan said...

That's great news about the kids! My daughter has dyslexia and struggles with reading - she's a damn good swimmer too! This year they've added story problems to math - why do they have to ruin a good thing?

Kewl Nitrox said...

Man, it is so hard as a parent to dance between the line of pushing them and being gentle with them. R1 whines when I take him biking (actually he starts from when told we are going biking), but he rode 5km the other time and you should have seen that smug look on his face when he finished and I told that he can probably race now. He wants to do a Triathlon but whines before every swim class and bike ride. ;)

Fe-lady said...

You are rich...because of your kids! And I wouldn't worry too much about the closed hand thing in swimming. I have heard to let the water flow through your fingers. No one (I don't think) can consciously keep their hands closed, like paddle boards for an entire swim!)

Oldman said...

try so fist glooves from Total Immersion Swimming

Bridget said...

This was the greatest post. I loved hearing about their races and what a great impact swimming has had on them. It sounds like pushing them really helped in the end.

Bolder said...

stick the two fingers -- the two that form the innermost part of the V -- directly into your nostrils, and have them remain there for an extended period of time.

this is the natural spacing recommended in the Total Nosepicking swim program.

your fingers will learn the correct spacing through the TN muscle memory system.

repeat several times a day with each hand.

no need to thank me, i'm here to help.

Cliff said...


That's great to hear about Soapinator. I agree, sports is a real good confidence builder for kids. Academic is important but sport has so much life skills that academic cannot provide.

When I swim, my right pinky have a tendency to fly out. I can feel it creating drag. Perhaps taping hands is the answer/? :)

Chris said...

The tribe totally rocks. If I were still a kid, I'd totally want to be adopted by your family. :)

I wouldn't worry too much about your spock hands. I don't think it really makes that much different if your fingers are closed or open (or V-shaped, in your case). At the very least, the other aspects of your stroke will make a much bigger difference than your finger shapes. I don't know how you can hold that position without getting hand cramps, though!

Robin said...

CONGRATULATIONS to Soapinator! How very cool for her. :)