Diving in

The big kids’ first-ever swim meet proved to be one of those parenting moments I was not sure I'd survive.

Just being at the meet was an accomplishment enough, given the preceding weeks of anxiety (first theirs, then mine).

But when the time came for lining up, the kids rose to the challenge as they consistently do. And I rose too--dutifully standing behind the cones, a mere inch from the dividing line between parents and swimmers.

I watched my first swimmer dive in, then splash and squirm through the slowest, most painful 25-meter freestyle of my life. I very nearly vomited up a ball of nerves right there on the pool deck.

I witnessed my other child slip into the pool for the backstroke with only a Don’t-Talk-To-Me-I’m-Nervous game face poking out of the water.

I made it through four events without tears. Each time I cheered loud enough to mask my quivering. And each time, our swimmers emerged beaming and triumphant. My face nearly cracked with pride.

And then, just as I was feeling stable enough to congratulate the kids without sobbing, Hubby leaned over and whispered, "Whatever you do, don't think about that one Olympic commercial."

Jerk. And there went the floodgates...