Today was a good day, and so much of that is because of my amazing kid. She had her swimming lesson today, and my dad was in town so he came to watch, which made her really happy. None of the other kids showed up, so she had the teacher all to herself. By the end of the 30 minutes, she was swimming under water for a few seconds by herself and floating on her back for a few seconds by herself! She was also holding her breath and going down to pick objects up off the bottom. I was so proud, and I could tell the teacher was really excited for her! She’s such a fish, but at age 3 I didn’t realize she could take off swimming like this! The way this swim school really “gets” kids is so amazing. She feels so comfortable and has so much fun, how can she not learn in the process?
After swimming we spent many hours at a large park with gardens and playgrounds and walking trails. My dad, stepmom, and aunt were all hanging out as well. M had the best time, making friends with a 5-year-old daughter of Chinese parents, who she ran around with for about an hour. She makes friends so easily, I was definitely the opposite when I was a kid! Thanks to her, I get to meet some really nice fellow parents. When the little girl left, we took a family walk to the herb gardens, where my aunt Carol taught M to smell the plants, find the peppermint and lavender, and rub it on her skin. After the park we hung out at a bookstore until dinner, and M was so happy to be walking around holding her Grandpa’s hand and playing with him.
She was so sweet to the babies at the park, what a change from last year when they were always her targeted victims! She also asks anyone who falls or trips if they need help and if they’re ok, and she offers to push kids on the swings. She always holds the door open for anyone coming in or out of a store or restaurant. I am bursting with pride to see how caring and kind she has become.
We had a large family dinner, with my sister and niece and grandma (my father’s mom) joining us. M and her cousin were thick as thieves, and they begged not to go home because they were so desperate to play with each other. M, currently a bottomless pit, tucked away almost more food than I did!
When we got home, the neighbors had their grandsons (aged 2 and infant) over and M was especially happy to see her pal Henry, who hasn’t been out since last summer. He was thrilled to see her, too! He’s exactly a year younger, and the difference between them blows me away. He’s still “toddler” and there was my 3-year-old, jumping off the dock into the lake to fetch him rocks and shells, talking our ears off. Comparing her to someone a year younger makes her seem like such a big kid. I’m so proud that I can now trust her to run ahead, jump off a dock, climb rocks, etc and she handles it with ease. Seeing her grow up is the greatest blessing of my life.
So, finally, a nice day surrounded by family and friends, a day when I didn’t feel overwhelmed with work and stress. If only more days were like these.