Monday, July 11, 2011

Stories From The High Dive

I took Caroline and three friends to the indoor pool at our local rec center this afternoon.  We have a perfectly acceptable pool, which is FREE to use, right down the road, but the indoor pool, which costs $6.40 per person, was calling our names today.  Actually, it was the diving boards which called our names.  And I can't deny the fact that not having to deal with messy sunblock was a selling factor, as well.

There are three diving boards; two of normal height off the water and one high dive.  Not platform diving high, but, still, very high. Caroline first jumped off the high dive when she was at camp two weeks ago and was eager to do it again.  And again.  And again.

Because I have nothing else to do with my time but entertain Caroline and her friends, and because I appear to be quite the self-loathing sadist/glutton for punishment, we all made the trip over to the pool this afternoon.  But not before I arrived home from the gym to a hot cooked lunch waiting for me.  Caroline and Sarah, who 'kid-sits' while I go to the gym, felt it was in their best interest to have lunch waiting for me so that they could get to the pool faster.  They very eagerly made me an entire box of macaroni and cheese, a huge bowl of trail mix and a  murky, sludgy green smoothie.   I was touched by the sentiment, even though what they prepared might not be my usual lunch of choice.  Ever. 

It was sweet, though.

Anyway, we made it to the pool, paid our entrance fees and got settled in.  First Caroline jumped.  Then Rachel, followed by Sarah.  Bailey was last.  She's not a fan of heights and wasn't really enthusiastic about the whole jumping off the high dive thing.  Still, she jumped, albeit hesitantly.  And she was okay.  I think she may have smiled after?

Then they went again without incident.

The third time Bailey jumped, she cried a little after, said she was scared and came and sat down with me.  I told her she DID NOT have to jump off the high dive.  The other girls were not pressuring her and were perfectly satisfied with her sticking to the low dive.  I told her I would never jump off the high dive and that it was perfectly okay to be afraid.  I figured what I said stuck with her and I continued to read my book while the girls swam and jumped.

A little while later I look up and there is Bailey on the high dive.  She chickened out and wanted to back down, but for safety purposes (?) they don't let you do that.  We encouraged her to jump but she wouldn't.  She just stood there and cried.  I felt bad for her, really, I did.  But, she didn't have to get up there.  No one made her. No one forced her against her will.  For reasons I'll never understand, she climbed that ladder on her own.  She cried for a while.  We encouraged her to jump, but she wouldn't.  A nice young man offered to wait in the water to 'catch' her but she refused.  Thankfully the lifeguard came to her rescue and helped her down off the ladder.

She cried for quite a long time.  I'm sure she was embarrassed. 

I felt terrible for Bailey.  I still don't understand why she went up there. 

If I don't want to do something, I don't do it.   Especially if it involves jumping off of high things or touching animals who don't have feet or fur.

Even though I am one of them, I don't think I'll ever understand girls.

We're a confusing lot.

Our afternoon at the pool was short lived and emotionally draining.  We did stick around for a little bit to allow the other girls to jump.  I told them I'll bring them back later in the week without Bailey.  Somehow I doubt Bailey will mind being excluded from that trip!

We went for Slurpees after.  Slurpees have an uncanny knack for cheering kids up.....especially when they're free.

 Oh thank heaven for 7-11!

1 comment:

Hilary said...

Poor Bailey! I too will never understand why we do things we don't want to do. I have a similar incident that involves a boy girl party, spin the bottle, and me crying hysterically while a 9th grade boy tried to console me in a corner. It does get easier... atleast that is what I tell myself.