We have a small pool at home with a current generator so I can swim in place, but alas, the outdoor swimming season has come to an end. Last year I quit swimming during the cooler months, but since I have persistent knee problems, this year I didn't want to give up one of the few things I can do that doesn't hurt. The local YMCA has a beautiful pool, so I joined last weekend.
I bought a pretty purple bag to arrive in style:
Of course, I would need a combination lock for the lockers:
Even swimming requires extra support for my knees, so I brought along my compression do-dads:
I locked up my stuff, slipped on the compression do-dads and walked out to the pool area. You can imagine that I looked fab. There's a shower right by the pool for rinsing off, and as I was getting my hair all soaked down, a woman walked over to compliment me on my knee gear. Where did I get it? What's my problem? Next thing I know, she's talking bone-on-bone pain and her next doctor's appointment.
To my surprise, I felt very comfortable. Athletes with battle scars, still fighting it out with whatever they have left. These are my people now. No more jockier-than-thou for me. Could I be ready for Aqua Zumba? A cap with flowers?
Swam laps for 45 minutes. It was great to stretch out across the pool after swimming in place all season. I used to swim at a nearly identical facility years and years ago, and I had this sense of being transported back in time. I was 30 again, and even though I have no desire to turn back the clock in real life, in the surrealistic blueness of the pool, it made for a fantastic swim.
I tried to get out of the pool at the deep end with a little hop up onto the ledge as I used to, but the wrist I broke in March wouldn't support me, so I went under the ropes to the next lane and used the ladder. A small concession ... just reality knocking. I made my way to the locker room and went to unlock the combination, but there was a tiny problem. Can you guess what it might be?
My glasses were inside the locker, and I could not read the numbers on the lock! I squinted, got closer, backed off and waited for someone else to come and help me. No one showed. Finally I started spinning the dials with wild abandon. Then I settled down and was able to make out the general shape of some numbers. A lot of trial and error, but eventually I landed on the right combination.
When reality knocks, it knocks loud. My husband found the story hilarious, but he has bionic eyes thanks to cataract surgery. He said I needed a large-print lock, and for some reason that gave him the giggles. I'm thinking of a hard plastic case for my glasses that I leave at the end of the lane where the real swimmers put their pull buoys and paddles and other workout gear.
I will have those toys one day, too. As is my style, I will get better at this and swim like I mean it. But for now what I really need are my glasses so I can go home when I'm done.