Crying, Cringing, Sweating


My daughter was gripped with fear when she was learning to swim. Even though the lesson was only a half hour, I spent half of that time trying to pry her four-year-old fingers from the guardrail. Every week, it was the same thing: un-prying, coaxing, crying, sweating. . And no matter what bribe I offered, she refused to get into the pool. All the other kids were in the pool splashing and having fun.  I was so embarrassed in front of the other mothers. They glared at me as my child whipped me in a game of wills every week. I felt defeated.

I think every mom feels defeated at some point in her life. Have you felt that way—as if your repeated attempts to teach your child are met with crying, clenching and sweat? Take heart. My daughter is now in high school and is an adept swimmer. Yes, it took many tries, but finally, she waded into the pool on her own and can now teach others to swim.

How has perseverance paid off in your role as a mother?

Scripture: Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance character; and character, hope. Romans 5:3-4

Photo courtesy Microsoft Images

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6 thoughts on “Crying, Cringing, Sweating

  1. This article makes me think about when I delpoyed to Afghanistan and left my wife with three children all under the age of five. She told me she felt that several times when I was gone. Then unit I was with had little or no support structure for the spouses and families. She was pulled through by the love of family.

    I think all mothers and fathers can feel this about their families. For me, my faith helps pull me thourhg all situations.

    God Bless you and your family.

  2. There are so many I times I can reflect, as I am a mother of grown, married adults, that it was hard to stand against the ‘everyone else is doing it’ comment.
    I wanted my kids to be active, and included, but, there were times when it just wasn’t the best situation for them to enter into.
    Those were the times I had to get creative and offer something else, something that would take their mind off what ‘everyone else was doing’.
    Some of the time that worked, but, more than not, it was only a struggle to explain ‘why’…or, sometimes just to say, ‘because I said so’.
    Now, I am content that I persevered, and so are they, for the most part.
    I think that is one of the toughest ‘calls’ we, as mothers, have to make…when to hold their hand and when to let go.

    • Veta, your comment reminds me that parenting requires courage and a “rugged individualist” attitude. Despite what everyone else is doing, we have to fight to stay in touch with our intuition and common sense! Thanks for your encouraging comment.

  3. This summer was the first year my son actually enjoyed his swimming classes. Unfortunately, we couldn’t complete the class because he got sick. Your post gives me hope.

    • Anjali,
      Yes, each child is an individual and they desire to learn at their own pace. But learn, they will. Keep the faith Anjali knowing that your efforts are not in vain. They will pay off, it just takes a while sometimes. There will be other swimming classes so don’t worry.

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