Sponsors: www.cailorfleming.com/ hbkcpa.com/consultants/melissa-crowley/ Ps 103: The Lord is kind and merciful.
Swim parents. We're a breed unto ourselves, to be certain.
Take one glance and it's clear: We aren't your typical sports Moms and Dads.
Or aunts and uncles; grammas and grampas; or general fans of float. We don't cuss, fuss or tell coach how to wrangle his school of fish. We're different.
In no other sport does a single, shrill, well-timed yelp (no, not the online recommendation sort), trill tooth-whistle or high-pitched WOOP mean so much. Parents of breast-strokers get it. Actually, some tend to get carried away with the ritual; which is what the other swim 'rents wish for when it starts making our ears bleed. I digress.
Not on any other platform does the low, slow, deep utterance of a mono syllabic, two-letter word pack such a wallop. GGGGGGGGGOOOOOOOOO!
Oh, and BTW, only we can pull off the ridiculously wild, forward shaking, open-palmed, side-hand wave as a sign of fierce support and symbol of unrelenting allegiance.
Speaking of platforms, our kids use them to perform death-defying acts of aerial acrobatics...fearlessly flinging themselves head-first straight down into the bottom of the pool. Like, on purpose!
Look, in our eyes, our sons are all Michael Phelps and our daughters are all Katie Ladecky, you dig?
That's why we're only too happy to travel to obscure towns for a solid 8 hours --one way-- in the middle of the storm of the century, past 47 spin outs and the abominable snowman himself, merely to sit in a chlorine-soaked sauna on bum-bruising wooden planks, er, bleachers ALL DAY.
Did I mention we're shoved shoulder to shoulder with some grumpy Gus (who's cheering loudly for OTHER team, natch), behind Andre the Giant (because we wanted to record this race) and directly in front of that one gal who insists on taking off her shoes and resting her bare tootsies beneath our snack bag ('cause that's ENTIRELY sanitary and not at ALL inappropriate)?
Here we sweat, I mean sit, for several more hours just to glimpse our children compete for 20.02 seconds … and hopefully even briefer.
Yet, we are an evolved group of homosapiens. We cheer for any swimmer or diver performing well (though we prefer them to be on OUR team, thanks) and encourage our offspring to graciously wish luck toward then congratulate their lane mates on a race well swum. Every. Single. Time.
And they do.
Why? In my experience, swimmers/divers are an exceptional group of athletes… and persons. They just are.
They work as hard in the classroom as in the faux lagoon. Probably because they are forced to practice good time management skills.
Moreover, these humans are humane. Meaning, I am hard-pressed to think of many who do not offer respect to elders (yes sirs, thank you ma'ams, Mr. and Mrs. salutations), common courtesy to strangers (holding open doors) and a loyalty to one another that I've not always encountered on other fields of play…literal or metaphorical.
These are the sort of people who, although their hearts are broken at being robbed of a school record due to a dubious DQ in the championship's last event, will rally around each other in a show of unending loyalty that is nothing short of familial.
And that warms a Swim Mom's heart on the ride home through a blustery blizzard --as she smiles proudly for 8 solid hours, capsice?
Kimerer is the world's proudest swim Mom; float her a line: www.patriciakimerer.com
2/23/2020 09:45:54 am
Thoroughly enjoyed Whoop Whoop Swim Parents. A competitive swimmer from seventh grade through high school, your words ring so very true. Your comments about the quiet sport demanding strong time management skills is proven by my best high school grades coming during swimming season. The courtesy of participants and fans easily identifiable. Maybe such behavior is attributable to staring at a black line during three hour practices five days a week.
2/23/2020 10:04:31 am
Carl, congrats on all your years of hard work! God bless you and your family and thanks so much for the kind words!
2/23/2020 10:12:08 am
I'm sure when Griffin graduated, everyone was glad not to hear an obnoxiously loud, deep, "Go Herman, Go!"
2/23/2020 11:50:24 am
Hahahahaha! No way..you are the coolest swim mom ever!!
Carol M Mowry
2/23/2020 12:20:57 pm
As a swim mom and diving mom to two of my sons, I completely understand. I had a set of lungs myself. You could hear me in the next county. My boys started at age 5 and never missed a workout even the 5:30 am workouts. My middle son was all set for the 80 Olympics, you know the ones we boycotted. That was heartbreaking to so many athletes, not just our swimmers and divers. My son's high school records stood for over twenty years. His strokes were butterfly and backstroke. He did a good 400 IM too.
2/25/2020 06:39:36 am
Dear Carol, What a heartbreaker; that '80 Olympics experience must have been! I can't imagine; bet it still smarts to this day. Kyle was 3 when I first took him to swim lessons and he, too, never missed a workout. Kyle's a butterflyer and freestyler and is always crucial to the relays; so very proud!! Much love to you and your boys; hopefully there are some swimmers in the next generation, too.
Leave a Reply.