Hello. It’s me…

You aren’t in the car enough if that line doesn’t make you start belting out Adele tunes.  

I find myself sitting in the Starbucks parking – it’s 6 am and I haven’t gone in yet.  I still have a half a cup of coffee from home and the car is nice and warm.  Eventually I’ll need a refill and make my way in but for now I’m happy.  

Since I haven’t written anything in five months it might seems as if I’m not happy.  Or that things aren’t going well.  Which couldn’t be further from the truth.  I have always been the kind of person who needs to put their thoughts in writing.  For the last several months I haven’t really felt the need to think, out loud or on paper.  

Sophie has adjusted nicely to her transitions – into a new group and into middle school.  She is our token introvert but has a great circle of friends and is handling the increased load in school work and practice really well.  She has done well in swimming and had a great championship meet in December.  At 11 she took on some of the “big dogs” in 200 fly and had an amazing preliminary and final swim.  I’m already looking forward to what she will do with that race next year.  She also crushed her 500 free.   I think quiet little Sophie is going to become quite a distance swimmer.   She still hates 50 fly – she just can’t get going before the race is over.  Goals?

Sarah is enjoying her final year in middle school and is excited about high school.  She’s also in her final year in her group.  I guess it fair to say she’s also in a transition period, out instead of in.  She’s still on fire in the pool.  Having decided to take on fly and put breaststroke aside I expected her to do well in fly and was a little worried what would happen in breast.  Needless worrying.  Sarah had the meet of her life.   A month or two before she also proved herself worthy of accolades in distance free, she swam the 1000 and did really well.  Her ego got the best of her and she gave the mile a shot.   I’m not sure she will ever swim it again!  Her 200 fly deserves its own post.  Stay tuned.  

And then there is Grace.   Grace approached this season just like she approaches life.  Happy.  Having not dropped time in a while – some of her best times were two years old – I had no idea what to expect at her championship meets.  It wasn’t that I didn’t have faith in her.  I just had no idea what would happen.  She definitely surprised me when she got best times in EVERYTHING.  As a parent, it’s painful watching your kid plateau. You spend a lot of time watching, waiting, hoping and begging favors from the swim gods and nothing happens.  And then out of the blue everything falls into place for your kid.  The times she gets have become meaningless to me.  I’m in awe of her perseverance.  I would have quit a long time ago.  Grace may look just like me but she’s a far better person than I could ever hope to be.  

My kids are awesome and I love watching them swim.  None of them are going to the Olympics.  But they are champions in spirit.  I have grown a lot through this sport as a parent and a person.  But it’s because of my children. They have taught me well how to be a swim mom.  

It’s time for more coffee.  Cheers.  

5 thoughts on “Hello. It’s me…

  1. Hi,
    I just read through some of your blog and as a swim dad, I wanted to share something…
    Your daughters are improving because they are maturing. They will eventually all plateau (14-15yrs) because of their training. I felt compelled to comment as I am a father who has watched this happen. If I had to guess, your daughters are asked to swim quite a few yards everyday. This has little to do with their races and will only lead to frustration and injury.
    For the sake of your daughters and the love of the sport, look into USRPT. Old coaches who just ‘know better’ dismiss it, but the people who developed it are doctors, scientists, experts at physiology and have rooms full of properly vetted studies to back what they say. Dr. Rushall has been working on this since the 60’s. Your coaches will most likely have anecdotal evidence supporting their ‘program’. I’m not selling anything, like I said I’m just a dad.
    Check out the Colorado Torpedoes. This youth club has gone to USRPT and the head coach (30 years experience) says he’s never going back. He will answer any questions and is a wonderful ambassador for swimming.
    I hope your girls love swimming and I really do hope that they stay at it. So for the intrusion, but I just felt compelled to speak up.
    All the best,
    John Halgren

    • I emailed you and didn’t hear back but my oldest daughter swims with the top age group coach in the country and my other two have amazing coaches. I appreciate your desire to spread the word about USRPT but I also think it is unfair to assume that my kids swim coaches don’t know what they are doing…kids sometimes don’t do well and I really hate that as a swim society we are so quick to point our fingers at the coaches. It is life. And such is life.

      • Best of luck. The least influential person in an athletes life is their coach.
        I really do hope your daughters are having a great time and that they reach all of their goals.

      • Not sure I agree that coaches are the least influential person in their lives. My kids know that their dad and I are what provides all sources of stabilization for them but my kids swim coaches are family to us. Even Grace who left one club for another is still very close to her former coaches. Maybe we are the lucky ones. But I don’t think so. I will always be a die hard advocate for coaches and my children. You haven’t read my blog at all if you missed that. My kids are well loved and well coached, no luck needed but thank you. Are you suggesting Bruce Gemmell has no idea what he is doing and has no influence on a kids swimming? That is a bold statement. He coaches Grace and she and I would beg to differ.

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