As many of my readers already know, my 19 year old son Grady headed to U.S. Marine Corp boot camp at the end of July. I am so proud to be a marine mom and have been praying for him as I follow his platoon’s training on a chart that his recruiter gave to me. This 3rd week has stood out to me as it is Swim Week and my son does not know how to swim. I tried this summer to make up for the years of rarely getting to take him swimming (for reasons I will not elaborate on now) to teach him but we didn’t get very far. Many people have told me that the drill instructors are very successful at teaching recruits to swim.
One of the highlights of our summer was taking a vacation with Grady, my daughter Desire’, and my granddaughter Maddie-Rose to Wisconsin Dells (unofficially known as the water park capital of the world). This destination should be on anyone’s vacation bucket list that enjoys water. It would take someone more than a week to visit all of the water parks, theme parks, attractions, and many natural wonders on the water (the Dells) accessible by a variety of boat tours.
As I enjoyed watching Maddie-Rose splashing around wearing her floaties I was reminded of my own experience as a little girl first learning how to swim. At the beginning of that summer I would shriek in terror if someone splashed water in my face but within a few weeks I was jumping from the diving board and fetching Daddy’s keys that he would toss into the bottom of the deep end. Starting out I wore a bubble Styrofoam floatie on my back and would cling for dear life to and wrapping my little arms around Daddy’s neck. With much patience he taught me how to float first. Over and over he would gently say, “Just relax and trust me Bird”. I could feel his hands under the water supporting my back and legs as I slowly allowed the buoyancy of the water to lift me. Once I understood the anti-gravity superpower available to me in the water and learned to maneuver myself around through treading, doggie paddling, and swimming I felt as natural in the water as a fish.
Those teaching’/learning father/daughter moments have given me insight that I have carried with me throughout my life both in and out of the water. The bases for learning to swim is learning to relax in order to experience the feeling of floating just as learning to wade through this unpredictable fluidity of life requires that I trust in God to keep me afloat. Treading water is not our purpose but rather a type of holding pattern to sustain our life. If we have a direction we have to move with goals in mind and continue to improve on our form to move with poise and speed.
But then there are the times when it is okay to just have a pool party. We need to take moments to enjoy this life and float with the ones we love. Swimming is a great way to celebrate special occasions and milestones. There is a huge milestone that we can all celebrate today. Today, August 29th, is the day that we celebrate the birthday of the U. S. Marine Corp Reserves. For more information about the origin and history or this holiday click on this link : Marine Corp Reserve History and Birthday.
I will be posting many more interesting facts, stories, and resources about all branches of the military, law enforcement, fire fighting as well as the other subjects that I have written about previously as we all learn to live life fearlessly with Jesus through life’s triumphs and trials. Also, in the next few weeks I will be revamping this blog website, reopening the store and mini-mall (in time for online Christmas shoppers), adding a travel section (will share more about Wisconsin Dells there) and publishing interviews and contributions from guest writers. It is great to be back and I would love to hear your comments!
Jesus’s & Yours truly,
Isaiah 43:2 – “When thou passest through the waters, I [will be] with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.”