I have a new kid I'm looking after. She's a great girl, seven years old and gets on really well with my almost 5 year old niece. She also has a great mom who's been giving me an actual local social life by stopping in early with coffee and coming over for lunch.
Yesterday she said we should take the kids to a local park today. Fantastic! To swim in the lake. Oh no. But that would mean wearing bathing suits I said. Yes, she said. Oh God.
I thought I had an out. I said I didn't have a suit. Didn't faze her though and I eventually agreed even if it meant wading in with cutoffs and a t-shirt.
But this morning I found a bathing suit. I thought I had thrown it in a charity bag. Nope. It was there, old and a little ugly. I could lie. I could still wear the cutoffs and a t-shirt. Darn it, of course I couldn't.
See, this mom had told me about a class trip to the local pool she'd had to attend with her daughter. She is like me in body shape, wonderfully ample. The other moms were not. Yet she swallowed the fear, put on the bathing suit and went swimming with her daughter. How small it would make me if I couldn't manage to be inspired by her story.
So we all went. And we all swam. And boy was my friend right. There are a few moments of nervousness as you waddle into the water but after that, after you remember how wonderful it feels to be swimming and how fantastic it is to be able to share that fun with your kids (Catherine swam today, something I never knew she could do!) all the bad stuff disappears.
I spent years away from the water because I didn't want to be seen in my bathing suit. What a waste!