Sunday, February 8, 2009

They Swam Away

You should go over to the sidebar, click on A Slow Read, and take a look at the entry about the Midmar Mile.

It reminded me of a piece on NPR several years ago in which a woman reviewed her career as a swim meet mom. During the early years, she said, the moms all sat on the edges of their seats, and each one knew her child's rankings and times to the second. As the years passed, the friendships became much more important than the competition, and the moms visibly relaxed, finding much more to talk about than ribbons and medals, and re-discovering the things that are really important in life.

Now: a new stage. When some children have become ill or been seriously injured, and some children have died, the recognition of what is important shifts again. When there are mothers who look at the water and see only the swimmers who once were, the water changes color for everyone.