Sunday, October 10, 2010

Why We Do What We Do. part 3

We took a little day trip down to the bay for a practice swim a couple of weeks ago.
We brought the wet suit. And a couple of plastic bags. Which came in handy for carrying things, so I guess they help with wet suits. Kinda.

Our swim was in the area of Fiesta Island, next to a boat ramp.

I was READY.
Goggles. Check.
Swim cap. Check.
Wet Suit...right side out? Check.

My eldest daughter did it with me. She also had no problem what so ever putting on her wet suit. "What's the big deal, mom? You just put it on and pull it up." Ahhhh. Youth.
I still need Doug's help to put mine on, and Brenna added some encouragement.

"O.K.", I thought. "The practice swim. Here we go!" Oh. I was READY. I love water. I can swim now! I've been in the beach water all my life...
I began walking into the water.
A little cold on the feet. A little mushy as well. Don't think about it. Don't even guess what you are stepping on. Maybe it's sea grass. That's mushy. Wet suit is working. Can't really feel how cold the water is, except for my feet. Awesome!
Lauren says, "Come on in, Mom!!"
So, I threw my 48 year old, immuno-suppressed self into the water.
And here is what proceeded to go through my mind:



O.K. Whew! Ready? SWIM.

Uh, the water is brown and mucky.  I like my pool water that is super-chlorinated better. O.K. Swim.

How come I can't think? How come it's so hard to swim? How come I can't BREATH??
Let's think of some other words:
(crisp, frosty, nipping, nippy, snappy.)

This is not working so well. Nope. Not at all. Why can't I swim in a straight line? I can do this. I know I can do this.

(arctic, frigid, gelid, glacial, icy, polar)

Wow. How did this wet suit get so tight? It feels....a little tight. As in I want it off. NOW. 
Where's Lauren? Whaaat? She's going back for her second lap all ready?

shiverystone-coldunheated, unwarmed
I looked at Doug, who was walking the shore-line while we were swimming."I can't do this." I yell.  "I think I'm done." (I had done one of 4 - l00 yard laps.)

"Nope." Came the reply.  "You can do this! I know you can. Just keep going. Go on your back."
On my back I went. Ahhh. O.K. I can breathe now. All right. Let's try free style.  I would do several strokes, try and breathe and then loose direction. Back to my back. Breathe. Find direction. Free style. Loose direction. Back, breathe, find direction.You get the pattern.
So, I did it. What I didn't realize is this:Salt water swallowed in great quantities while swimming reminds me of a colonoscopy prep.I really have to turn my head to breathe.It is very hard to swim in a straight line in open water.I really, really like my heated pool compared to 60 degree water.I ended up doing something I didn't think I could finish.It takes a LOT of mental toughness. Choppy, cold mucky water does nothing but scramble your brain while trying to swim.When I come out of the water and hit dry land, I can't walk straight. At all. Then I'm supposed to get on a bike. The wet suit came off just fine.I am doing this NOT as a race. I am doing this as a challenge to myself. Right?Let me get back to you on that one.I can take as long as I want to clear my head and put on my tennis shoes.The real race is next Sunday.


  1. Hurray! You did it! I can't wait to hear about the real race. YOU GO GIRL!

  2. Okay, this looks like me except I'm spawled out on the floor next to my computer and minus the wet suit, cap and goggles. LOL!

    Look for my email for further explanation as to how came to be in such a state. UGH!


  3. ohhhhhh....you is VERY brave indeed. "She" has told me scary stories about wetsuits. "She" used to be a diver - LOVED it. In the ocean. Not lakes - they are full of smooshy slimy stuff and you can't see your dive partner when the lake is in full bloom. See what I mean about scary?!?! But it could be worse....you could be out on a boat, miles from shore.....and need to go wee....yep, that is VERY VERY scary...because if you start laughing.....well, you never want to wee in your wetsuit :(

    You is very brave indeed! Good luck with your race!! You CAN do it!


    Romeo and "her"

  4. That last photo says it all...but you did it!

  5. It's like my solo travels to Texas!! The brain says 'NOOOOOOOOooooo, can't do it...can't drive any further, it's much too scarey to do'! but the heart says, 'be brave & fly'. How do you not follow the heart?
    You are remarkable friend...
    Hugs & a High Five,

  6. Oh...you think I'm going to say something stupid again, don't you?
    Well, I'm going to surprise you and zip it.

    I will say that I have such admiration for you. Really... I do. I would have given up about half way through the inside out wet suit.

  7. You are one tough cookie! You must feel great that you finished. I would have quit for sure. Colonoscopy prep cracked me up! You are going to do great come race day. You inspire me.

  8. That's awesome! You made me laugh again. Way to go on completing the swim and good luck with the actual race.
    April @ HomeHinges.com

  9. oh my goodness Woman
    you are fearless
    I was giving you kudos for putting on the wet suit!
    You Rock!
    p.s. at least there were no jelly you know whats!!!