Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Learning To Swim

The toddler goddaughter loves water. She used to hate it, and I mean screaming hate it, until about three months ago. Now 'splash splash Auntie' is her favourite bath time game when she comes to stay (my friend only has a shower at her house). So with her being more comfortable in water now I'm starting to take the monkey swimming a bit more.

She's an independent little girl and, despite her age, always tries to let go of my hands when she's in the shallow pool (even though I don't let her - I'm a soft touch, not insane. lol) But her confidence always makes me smile.

And it got me thinking about writing (come on, you knew I'd take this to some writing level. heehee). Leaning to write and learning to swim are very similar.

There's the trepidation of dipping your toe in the pool or, in the writers case, the idea. The rush of cold shocking your body from your comfort zone as you move into the pool, or start to type.

You take your time at first. You stay in the shallow end, maybe you hold someones hand (in my Goddaughter's case that's me) -- for a writer it may be a mentor, a writing book, a forum. The hand holder helps you. They build up your confidence and teach you some of the skills you need to learn to swim/write.

You practice. Sure you may swallow some water/ delete lots of words, but you don't give up. Over time you gain the confidence you need to push out on your own. Dip your head underwater/start a new idea. You gain strength. Keep yourself afloat.

Sure, the lifeguard/crit group, mentor, writing book is always there. Always watching, waiting to jump in and help if you need/ask for it. You know you are never alone.

But you are stronger. You are braver.

It won't happen overnight. It may take weeks, months even to learn to swim/write. But you never give up. Because practice makes perfect.

16 comments:

Vicki Rocho said...

Great analogy! My daughter was like that. Fearless in the water and would fight to get out of my grasp. We got her one of those inflatable tubes with a built in seat to give her more of a sense of independence.

Renae said...

I love the way you link your everyday experiences back to writing. As usual you have yet another valid point. Great post!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Hopefully I write better than I swim the front crawl. ;)

Love the analogy. :D

Carole Anne Carr said...

Loved the post, must keep trying!

Jaydee Morgan said...

Good post and good analogy. Unfortunately, I can't swim and have no desire to learn but I'll keep the moral here in mind when I write :)

Rayna M. Iyer said...

I learnt to swim a couple of months before my 37th birthday, so the memory is still fresh. And yes, writing is no different.

Christina Lee said...

good stuff--practice makes perfect!

Laura Marcella said...

Terrific analogy! So true.

Carolina Valdez Miller said...

Love the analogy. It's exactly right. and your goddaughter sounds like she's very special to you.

Las Vegas Writer said...

Awesome analogy. I never would have thought swimming could be related to writing :)

Talli Roland said...

Great analogy!

I'm still working on the 'braver' bit. It takes awhile!

Amparo Ortiz said...

I think my brain just exploded because of the SHEER BRILLIANCE of this post. Seriously, I needed to read this today more than ever. Thanks.

Hannah Kincade said...

Your analogy is so simple yet so brilliant! Love it!! You are awesome and inspiring, Miss Lindsay.

Jemi Fraser said...

I love this analogy! You are so right - I remember sticking my toe in the water - and it was so scary! Thanks to my bloggy buddies, it's not nearly as terrifying now :)

Deb Salisbury said...

I love your analogy! And your goddaughter, too. :-)

~Nicole Ducleroir~ said...

Love this analogy! Writing does feel like sink or swim, at times. Here's to not drowning in our writing efforts!!