Swimming Lessons

I’m sitting here poolside watching my two beautiful children with their swim teacher. Swim lessons are mandatory for my children, I don’t want them growing up like me, an adult who doesn’t know how to swim. Of course, my children don’t know that I don’t know how to swim, it is even a secret that I somehow managed to keep from my wife even after all of these years together. The truth is that it isn’t just that I don’t know how to swim, I am mind-numbingly terrified of water; but for some reason, I have no idea why.

I wish I could remember what event transpired in my life that caused me to be terrified of water. Something must have happened, I am so terrified of water that I cannot even take baths, sometimes it is even difficult for me to take showers; and yet, no one knows. But then my wife came to me and asked to put in a pool, so now I have to figure out how to get through this terror and learn to swim without them finding out.

Usually, my wife takes the children to swim lessons and I stay home; but today she needed me to do it for some reason. I used to know why and I do remember it was a good reason, but the minute I saw the pool the only thing I can remember is my sheer terror of water. I was able to walk my children to the edge of the pool for their swim lesson; the closer I came to the pool the fuzzier I became. I could barely see, everything was a blur and I almost fainted; but I walked my children to their swim class and then walked to a table and chair on the poolside that was as far away from the pool as I could manage.

Watching my children swim without fear from a distance is an extreme joy, but anytime I have to stand up and move closer to the pool I start to have a panic attack. I begin to stumble and my vision blurs to the point where I can’t even see my children anymore. I have to go away from the pool to regain my balance and un-blur my vision so I can actually see my children again.

I have actually had therapy to try to get over my fear of water, many sessions in fact. Many sessions covered by my health insurance and still many more that I paid for out of pocket after I reached my yearly maximum for mental health visits. Despite the therapy, my fear remains; my therapist indicated that I would not be able to get over my fear of water until we determined the root cause, a detail we still have not been able to determine. We attempted so many different kinds of hypnotherapy and even tried past life regression but we still cannot determine what event has made me so terrified of water.

“Come see what I can do Daddy!”, one of my children yells from the pool. I was so dreading this might happen. I look up and see my son waving at me and asking me to come over. I so badly want to go see my son, but just the thought of standing up to walk over there makes me want to vomit, but still, this is my child so I must push back the fear and go see what he can do. But I can’t, for some reason, I am frozen to my spot and cannot move, I can’t even stand up.

This is more than the sheer terror I’ve experienced in the past because I’ve always been able to stand up and walk away from water, but I cannot stand up. I hear my son call out for me to come to see him again, but my hearing goes fuzzy while he’s talking and I can barely hear him anymore. I look towards the pool to see him and reassure him that I will be right over but my vision has become blurred again, worse than it was when I was close to the pool. I do not understand, I am nowhere near the pool so why is this happening?

Suddenly, I’m floating above my swimming pool, I realize being with my children was my life flashing before my eyes. I see my mother standing over my lifeless body on the phone in drunken hysterics while my dad is frantically performing C.P.R. trying to revive me. I slowly float upward and then stop; My spirit must be waiting until the time when I am beyond saving before continuing on to heaven. I see the paramedics arrive and they take over trying to revive my lifeless body for my dad. My dad stands up and my mother embraces him tightly. Suddenly my spirit begins to float upward again as the paramedics stand up and tell my parents that I am gone.

“He’s only six years old!” my mother screams as if she actually ever cared about me; of course due to her constant drunkenness, she slurs her speech so much that even the paramedics notice. It’s amazing the knowledge and wisdom your spirit has when released from its’ body; while in my six-year-old body I had not realized why my mother acted so different than my friends’ moms, but now I realize what the medicine she kept telling me she needed really was. I knew how to swim, I could have saved myself; I realize now that I am a spirit that I chose to get away from my mother.

Finally, my dad can be free of my abusive mother who cares more about her alcohol and drugs than her own family. My dad was the only one that kept me safe, he would always intervene when my mother started to abuse me so she would instead turn her anger toward him and beat him. Dad just took the beatings without raising an arm against my mother to ensure he could always be there to protect me. Now he can be free from her and find someone who is truly loving and caring just as much as he is. I will be certain to watch my dad from heaven, so when he does finally find a woman who deserves his kind soul and they have a baby, I will then ask God if he will let me return to him in the body of his new child.

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