Everyone should know how to swim. It's as important as knowing how to cross the street safely, and even more important than learning how to ride a bike.
Every kid should experience the thrill of jumping into a cool river, lake, or pool and be able to confidently enjoy the fun. In fact, I feel so strongly about swimming that
My Dad Law #11 is: Teach Your Kids How To Swim.
It's one of the most important things you can do as a parent.
We are definitely a "Water Family." I was lucky enough to grow up on a beautiful inland Oakland County lake and loved every minute of every summer. Swimming, Tubing and Skiing certainly are more fun when you aren't afraid of the water. I took my love for the water to an extreme and made it "My Sport" by swimming competitively up through high school. As a standing bet, $100 Cash goes to the first of my kids that can beat their old man across the pool!
We now live on Wolverine Lake and I absolutely know how lucky I am to raise my family on the water. My children are all good swimmers and I don't worry too much about them, but my wife struggles with it since she really never took great lessons as a kid.
I used to hear some complaining..."why do we have to learn how to swim?" but I think they are actually grateful for the experience.
I was reminded this past weekend that as a parent one must always stay vigilant around the water, no matter what the situation. A simple Little League End of Season Picnic could have taken a tragic turn when one of my son's teammates started to struggle on a swim out to the raft with his buddies.
My "Lifeguard Dad" instincts kicked in and I helped the boy safely back to shore.
No big thing, but I hate the thought of what could have happened had I not been in the lake with those kids.
(Just another not-so-subtle reminder that I'm glad I'm sober!)
Enjoy the summer and the water, but never ever let your guard down.
Man, I really need to start swimming some laps again...