The unusual journey of a swimming instructor

December 4, 2015

As a child, you know exactly what you want to be when you grow up. Sure, at that time this changes every 1 or 2 weeks, but the point is, whether a doctor or a policeman, you know.

 

Just as children know what they want to become, I knew exactly what I didn’t want to do. Well, I certainly wasn’t going to be a swimming instructor.

 

I thought it is a good idea to share my story with you because, just as with every story, there is a lesson to be learned from this one as well. In my case: overcome your fear and you’ll realize your potential.

 

I was very young when I had the first bad experience with water. Our relatives from Hungary came to visit us. The whole family wanted to enjoy the summer, so we decided to go to Băile Felix, a thermal spa resort near my hometown.  Back then I thought I had everything I would need: blankets, the beach ball, cards and other toys. I believed that pretty much covered it. Knowing how to swim, did not seem to be a big deal.

We were having a great time. We played a lot, ate ice cream … all the usual stuff. Nonetheless, I saw the huge swimming pool and how people kept jumping in the water from something that for me looked like a big ironing-board. I considered this cool and I thought I’m a ‘big’ boy, so I decided to jump as well. The plan was to go around the pool until I arrive at the ‘ironing-board’ but I soon realized the pool was too big and I didn’t want to waste time by going around it. Thus, I’ve walked to the side of the swimming pool and just jumped in the water from there. I only remember being in the water and somehow seeing myself from the outside, like with the mind’s eye.

 

Since I had no idea how to swim, my family didn’t think for a minute that I would actually jump in the water. They looked at me and were curious of what I wanted to do, but never thought I would dare to do that. Everybody was shocked. It all happened very fast, in a matter of seconds. My cousin was the first one who reacted and jumped in to rescue me.

 

I don’t remember what I did afterwards, but the feeling of not wanting to be in the water ever again is still very clear. I wanted to be as far from swimming pools as possible. Now it all seems so strange, but yet another bad experience was ahead.

 

I will continue the story in my next post, so if you’re wondering how did that scared child become a professional swimming instructor, keep on reading.