A Day Like Today: Swim time with baby

As promised last week, here's the first post in my new guest series! Sheila is a Dubai-based blogger (read more about her below) and was happy to share this story about her toddler's first experience at the pool.

The Little One’s first pool experience was at 18 months. It was a sunny kind of day in Dubai - not too hot and not too cold … perfect for a day in the pool. As soon as we got to the pool area, Daddy took the baby and had a dip in the nice clear water. The baby has something else in mind, though. She started crying and wailing like a banshee! Daddy thought she would like the water because she definitely loved bath time. She liked to splash water all around and never wanted to leave the tub. Yet, she cried when placed in a pool. He was devastated!

I took The Little One to calm her down. I realized that she was not really afraid of the water, but the unfamiliar surroundings! Everything was new and big. She wasn't used to this kind of 'bath'!

I let her settle down a bit, assuring her that everything was okay. She slowly got comfortable playing on the ground, and then started walking towards the water.  I was just following her, making sure she didn't trip or fall. I could see in her eyes that she was enjoying the new environment now!

I patiently waited for her and when I felt that she was ready for a dip, I sat her on my lap while my feet were submersed in water. After a while, she tentatively dipped her foot … then the other foot. Soon enough, she was playing in the water! I think I deserved an award for that!

It was a nice opportunity for us to bond, explore and learn. Our next problem was she didn't want to get out of the pool anymore!

I am happy that my baby is not afraid of the water now. And I feel accomplished that I was able to convince her to play in the pool! It may be a small thing for some, but to me that’s a big deal.  But I do know of some kids (not toddlers, though!) who don’t want to leave the shallow end of the pool. Either way, it is important to recognize the child’s feelings. Be patient. It might take a while for your child to be ready and follow your child’s cues.

Sheila is an expat mum in Dubai. She and her Little One together learn about life and unconditional love. She writes on the Baby Mama Blog. You can also follow her on Twitter (@shoutingw1nd) and on Facebook.

(A Day Like Today is a guest post series about sharing memories of special times spent with kids. Here's how you can contribute too.)

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Heather Jones said...

How fun. Right now both my sons are in swim lessons. My youngest is 19 months old and he loves the water, and my oldest is four years old. He is having a harder time adjusting to the water than his younger brother. I think the younger they are when they experience the water, the better. And yes, it has to be on the child's terms. You can inadvertently make them afraid of water if it is pushed too much. Glad to here she started to enjoy it!

Unknown said...

Hi Heather, thank you for taking time to read our first swim experience. I remembered one of the things my swim coach told me years ago, "you have to be relaxed in the water". It's the same for kids. If we push to hard, they panic and that's not good. :)

Good luck with your boys! See you at the Olympics. LOL

Mary @over40andamumtoone said...

I have a real fear of water but have faced those fears to ensure my little man gets used to being in the water and he loves it, thankfully. I'm still not so happy #magicmoments

Tarana Khan said...

I'm not much of a swimmer myself, but I'll make sure my toddler starts early!

Jaime Oliver said...

What a beautiful post and such a lovely moment, thanks for linking up with #MagicMoments xx

Unknown said...

oh the fears we must conquer for the sake of our kids! :)

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