October 26, 2010

Coming Around Again

I swam competitively for the first time in 30 years on Sunday morning. The day started off on the wrong foot as I anxiously awoke at 4:22 AM, more than two hours before my alarm was set to go off. Then I got in the shower to shave and cut my legs in three places…which made me a bit late for the warm-up at the pool.

But by the time I got on the starting block to race I was relatively calm and my finish time was less than 5 seconds off my best time ever. I am determined to improve my time at the next meet.

Masters Swimming is a national program for anyone over the age of eighteen. Sunday’s swim meet featured about 115 racers including an 84-year-old woman racer, and an 80-year-old man! So fun! Men and women race against each other, and it’s a great community event. Plus, you can join Masters Swimming and you don't have to race.  It’s a good program for those who just want to swim for fitness too.

Returning to racing felt like going to a reunion of sorts for me- except all the people and the swimming technology are different now. I guess it was more like a reunion with myself!  Being under water is one of the most calming and centering things I have ever done. Kind of like yoga, for fish :-)

The photo above is of me 32 years ago. I'm hoping that I can get my arms at least half as strong as they were back then at this ripe old age of almost 50.

It’s gratifying to circle back around to things we once loved to do but moved away from for whatever reason.  Maybe it’s a sport, but perhaps it’s playing the violin or singing, or writing, doing art, being in a play, or learning a language that we once loved.  After college, parts of all of us get put on hold -or even forgotten about- as we start jobs and/or families, but it reconnects us with our souls to unearth them again. And, it adds a new dimension to our lives.

I’ll keep you posted on my progress...