Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Took the plunge!!!! Details included :D

A nanosecond after I published this post, I had 5 comments! WTF???, you ask? I think I hit publish before I actually wrote the post but after I wrote the title. So now the "deets" are included!

Yesterday after work, I drove home. I put on my Lands' End bathing suit and socks with my flip flops (since it's in the 20s here!). I covered up with old warm-ups. I got a towel and a hair brush. I drove to the gym. I asked my friend Betsy who works at the gym to show me the ropes of the swimming facilities. I put my stuff in a locker. I stepped under the requisite warm shower prior to entering the pool area, and then I walk out to the pool area and GOT IN THE FREAKING WATER! I finally did what I've been anguishing over for the last 20 years. There is a large 8 lane lap pool, and then a smaller "therapy" pool that is kept at 88 degrees and where the classes are held. That's the pool I entered first.

It felt good. I noticed a wave of teary gratitude as I felt the water surround every millimeter of my body. I paddled around awhile, tread water for about 10 minutes, walked from side to side, and then climbed out and got into the lap pool. Actually got out with wet suit clinging to imperfect body and walked to the other pool. I did 10 laps of whatever arm strokes and leg movements got me moving forward in the water... slo-o-o-wly. There were a few others sitting around watching kids, and a few folks swimming laps. None of them seemed to even notice the new zaftig puffy gal padding around frantically pulling her clinging wet suit away from the underlying body imperfections. Me thinks that while this was a giant leap for Leslie, it was a non-event for humankind.

And it was a giant leap for me. I have spent so much time wringing my hands over not being able to enjoy water over the years - telling myself that it was almost a service to not expose my imperfect lumpy body in a manner that others might have to see and...gasp...endure. Good grief. The egocentrism of that is absurd. An egomaniac with an inferiority complex. This swimming/bathing suit issue is a microcosm of the reality that I get in my own way and am the author of my own misery much of the time. This will be one of the areas I look at as I work on the 4th step inventory I talked about yesterday.

I'll be back at the pool today. One thing - I'm going to get a classic one piece suit now, because while the tankini thing worked fine, there was a lot of flowing fabric that I don't need or want now that I'm a big girl who can get in the water all by herself! I have an overall sense of greater freedom today, just knowing that I unlocked one of the countless self constructed prisons in which I've dwelled for so long. And I have to thank Stacia, from Swimming It Off, for her personal encouragement as well as for her fantastic blog. If you haven't seen it, check it out. She's got a lot of great stuff to share. The whole time I was in the water, I was thinking of her and how I was going to email her the second I got home and tell her I finally took the plunge. I did - and she responded with enthusiasm and joy at my "accomplishment". Just another amazing blogger reaching out to help me. I pray that I can offer as much support to you all as I always receive.

26 comments:

  1. 任何你憂慮的事,你都應該去採取一點行動,不要只是在那邊想..............................

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  2. Yay Leslie...can't wait to hear all the deets :P

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  3. I completely second what 日本 said...

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  4. I knew that you had gone swimming when I read the title! Good for you!

    You should be very proud.

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  5. Hee! Jack is always so stinking funny.

    I know you probably can't hear it from where you are - but it is me - standing and clapping for you. AWESOME!

    I look forward to more updates from the pool. You are a star!

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  6. Hurray for you! :o) I need to make the effort to go swimming more often because I LOVE it so much! I totally understand your apprehension, and if there are people out there offended by my 280lbs body (in a neck-to-knees aquatard swimming costume - see, I AM considerate towards them!) then f*ck 'em! Let THEM stay out of the water instead!

    Can't wait to hear more about how many laps you're managing and in what time... ;o)

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  7. Hi Leslie. Very well done! And ready for a one piece as well! You're motoring now!

    Bearfriend xx

    PS I agree with the Chinese writer as well - anything you're worried to do you should just go and do it.

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  8. Yay for you!!!! Im super proud of you for doing something that made you so uncomfortable....and enjoying it! And yes, you inspire us just the same!!!

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  9. Is Jack Sh*t the funniest, smartest dude in these her parts or what???? I literally guffawed so loud when I read that that someone outside my office yelled in, "What's so funny?"! And how did Sir Jack get those Chinese characters out of his keyboard???

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  10. I was in tears reading this - I was so glad that you 'got out of your own way'. Congrats!

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  11. You rock girl!!!! WHOOHOO!!!! Can you hear me cheering all the way from FL??? I am :)

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  12. I did a dance again today while reading this... the water is the best lace for some of us and I SO WANT PEOPLE TO GO GET IN THE WATER!!!!! Especially when you are either injured have arthritis or are super morbidly obese like I was and it is the only safe place to go get in a workout almost daily with minimal pain or injury.

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  13. also.... I was so surprised and pleased by your email directly after swimming it was like opening a present. I find the water so freeing and equalizing and I am just glad when other people find it too.

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  14. What a wonderful post Leslie! I am SO PROUD of you! Yay!!!

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  15. Hip Hip Hooray for you Leslie! (I think that's what the first comment says too) ;-)

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  16. Loved reading this post today!! I cheered for you, guffawed at the "egomaniac with an inferiority complex", cracked up over the hilarious comments...

    Most of all, I am just so happy for you! I really enjoy Stacia's blog, too. I am so glad she lit a fire under you, and you took the plunge!
    Loretta
    =^..^=

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  17. So excited for you Leslie, as I lived in the same 'no swimming allowed' prison for at least 20 years. You are making me want to get back in the water--I stopped when it got cold, which is nowhere near 20 degrees here in N. Calif!

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  18. What an awesome post! hurray for you! It is the most empowering thing to overcome our fears though isn't it??

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  19. How frikken cool - I LOVE swimming. Keep us posted.

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  20. That is sooo cool! I loved swimming as a kid (we lived next to the Colorado River).

    Very excited for you-Keep up the great work!

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  21. Congratulations!!!! I'M SO PROUD OF YOU!!!!!

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  22. Good job! But please, please, don't wear socks with flip flops anymore. That is doing a disservice to those who see you. ;) Anyway, I hope that it gave you good exercise and that you'll keep continue doing it. And yeah, I always thought tankinis were uncomfortable. I prefer bikinis or one-pieces.

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  23. As I'm reading this and cheering you on in my head I'm thinking of how I too have problems wearing a swimsuit in public. I need to get over the fact that anyone is judging my body and just enjoy the water like you did. I hope that swimming becomes part of your life now. It seems like it gives you a lot of pleasure and that is such a good thing.

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