Swimming lessons and CPR: Why it’s worth it.

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Shep comes off this slide and goes straight into his safe float, every time.

This summer I have been personally contacted as a point of reference for three different drowning or near drowning experiences. All of them bring me to my knees. I’m OK being the mom to call about drowning, I’m more than willing to offer up information from our personal experience to anyone who finds themselves in the same terrifying position. But man, I wish I wasn’t an expert.

So one thing I’d say to ALL moms and dads is this: It is worth your money to invest in CPR and survival swim lessons for your littles. It IS. I know it’s super expensive. Trust me. We were fortunate to have help paying for months of swim lessons for Shep and Char. And I still stressed and had moments of doubt every time the bill came. Until I saw it click with both my kids. If I had to do it all over again and pay all of it myself, I would. Char is barely 2.5 and that girl knows what to do in water.

AND WE PRACTICED. Moms and dads, if you can, practice those skills with your kids. When the money and my energy for driving to multiple swim lessons finally ran out, I found that practicing the skills they’d learned over and over in our neighborhood pool is what sealed the deal for both my kids.

The same goes for CPR. It runs about $30-$60  per person depending on what type of certification you get, and the class lasts around 2-4 hours. It’s not exactly my dream date night. But let me just say this: If my dad, a doctor, had not been at the house when we found Shepherd floating in the pool, CPR would have been up to me. And I hadn’t been trained since Shep was born. My first instinct was to rush Shep inside to my dad, because I believed he could do it well, and he did.  Thank God. But I’m Shep and Char’s mom. I should know what to do, I should be able to try and save their life if it comes down to it. So get certified, and if you’re rusty, do it again. At the very least, look it up on youtube. One night of class is worth a million nights of tuck-ins.

Lord knows, there are no guarantees, and things happen…even with lessons. But every time I get a call or a message about someone else’s child I eventually have to seek out Shep, stopping to hug him and whisper “I love you” in his ear, because I thought I’d never be able to again. If I didn’t know drowning, I would not advocate swimming lessons and CPR, that’s a fact. I’d see the price tag and put it off another year. But I DO know drowning, and I sleep better at night knowing we’ve done what we can in this arena. Moms who don’t know what it’s worth, I hope you never find out, but trust me…..it’s worth it.

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