The Mamasty Blog. The Pool
Personal Confession #2
My Fears Realized.
I fear that if my children were in danger, I would take too long to react. We've had two incidents now this summer where my Mila has found herself underwater alone. Last night being one of them...
My in-laws moved into our neighborhood to a house with a pool. Mila wandered into the water without her float jacket on after we had eaten pizza for dinner. My mother-in-law and I were talking, no more than 10 ft from her, but it took us a few seconds (at least I think it was only a few seconds...) to realize she was submerged.
The image of her head underwater still haunts my mind to this day. My MIL who saw her first, jumped in and grabbed her out. As a registered nurse, she monitored her for a few hours, checked her lungs, and she was fine.
I... was not. It's like I froze when I saw her. The situation didn't register to my brain. I panicked for longer than I would have expected.
After that incident I immediately enrolled both of my kids in a local swim class. An amazing swim class with certified teachers and a camp pool. Last night we completed our first week of classes with a little swim play in the shallow end with the other children and instructors. My husband had left early to go home and cut the grass, so I sat on a chair poolside watching all the kids play.
I noticed Mila, my fearless 3 year old, playing with a little yellow boat. She started walking her way closer and closer to the deeper end into the 4ft area of the pool ramp. The way she was positioned in the pool, I could only see the top her head. And then, I couldn't see that anymore. I knew that water was too deep, and she wasn't walking back. I quickly decided to get up and check on her just to make sure she was ok. I knew there were instructors all around her in the water, but I just had a feeling...
As I walked over to her, she was treading water. Her back was to me but I saw her little arms and legs moving. As I began to reach down for her, I noticed her face was underwater. She was trying ferociously to tread water, but she just wasn't quite there. She was under. As I grabbed her arm an instructor immediately came over to us and pulled her up. She began crying and I pulled her fully out of the water.
I know that if I hadn't walked over to her and been watching her as she meandered into the deep end, she may not have been seen my anyone and could have quietly drowned in a pool full of people. Just to type those words makes me sick to my stomach. And I just can't shake the feeling that my reaction to grabbing her was delayed. That I wasn't fast enough in my rescue of her in both situations and had there not been others around both of these situations could have ended in a much different way.
Even though she is fine, my confidence in myself as a mother, a protector, has been deeply shaken.
The image of her little head, her little body, underwater has been permanently etched in my mind... like a movie reel that keeps playing over and over again with a little voice saying I could have lost her. In a drowning.
Is it common in a traumatic situation to look back and think how you could have been better? How I could have been faster, smarter, more attentive, less laid back, more concerned... anything to get my brain to react to the situation in more of a panic?
My mind has been fixated on what could have gone wrong, than what went right. The mind. Can be a blessing and a curse all in the same breath.
Have you ever experienced a traumatic situation with your children that left you feeling like less than, like you should have/ could have/ thought you would have done more?
Hi, I'm Emmy. I'm a motherhood photographer, busy mom of two toddlers (almost three!) and personal honest motherhood blogger. I'm a woman who wants to use the power of connection to spread self-love, creative expression & mindful living.
My purpose is to create emotional connections through the power of photography and to encourage other women to slow down, stay connected, and to create space for honest expressions of the ying/ yang of love and self-doubt.
The Mamasty Blog: Honest Motherhood