Completed Outdoor Painting

Image

Completed Outdoor Painting

A commission. 6’x6′, acrylic on Crezon, 2012

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Swimming lessons–actual and metaphorical

Swimming is one of those things that people should know how to do, because say, you’re stranded on a ship in the high seas and the ship starts sinking and there are no life jackets. Or pool noodles. And then you’re outta luck.

However, I’m one of those people that despite lessons both in my childhood and adulthood, never could quite get the hang of it. Don’t get me wrong–I love water and I can spend hours in it “swimming” if I have a safety net like a noodle. I don’t know what it is that I’m afraid to let go.

I tried to take my daughter to a group swimming class. I informed the instructor that she was hard of hearing and can’t wear her hearing aids in the water. I told him that he must be at arm’s length away or closer when talking to her, and facing her. Of course that’s hard to do when there are four other classes happening in the pool simultaneously. It’s echoey enough as a hearing person! My kid said afterwards, “I can’t understand him”. So, I’ll look into private lessons.

Back to safety nets (or noodles)–as a parent it’s really hard to let your kid go off without the noodle, to watch him or her struggle. Intellectually I know it’s important as a learning strategy, but emotionally I just want to catch her, hold her hand, give her a noodle. However as she grows up in this world she needs to learn to ask for what she needs. In her special Deaf and Hard of Hearing Kindergarten Program, they are taught to say, “Could you say that again, please?” or, when asked what “those things” are in her ears, she says, “Oh they’re to help me hear better!” Usually the response is, “Cool!”

So, I have to let go of the noodle, bit by bit and watch this amazing little person advocate for herself.