Spectrummy Mummy

Asperger's, Allergies, and Adventures Abroad


with 6 comments

Corkscrew (tool)

Image via Wikipedia

Yesterday evening I was sitting on the bench watching Pudding swim.  Now, when I say swim I might not mean what you think I mean, so allow me to clarify.  Pudding was in the pool, vertically, and moving in the water from the direction of her teacher to the side as directed.

And when I say moving in the water, I might not mean what you think I mean, so allow me to clarify.  She was twisting around in a spiral, but rather than staying in one place, each twist took her closer to where she wanted to go.

Both her instructor and I were amazed, and bemused.  This aquatic pirouette was like no swim stroke you’ve ever seen, and yet Pudding was in control, and going where she needed to.  She had taken swimming and made it her own.  More importantly, she was having fun with it.

“What is this?”  I asked her teacher.  She shrugged, smiling.  I decided to call it The Corkscrew.  It is no butterfly, crawl, or breaststroke.  But it is hers.

I got to thinking, as I sat on that bench, that the corkscrew is quite appropriate for our heroine.  Most of us are straight lines.  When we are swimming through the great sea of life, we apply strokes that everyone recognizes.  We cut through the water quickly and efficiently.  It is so natural and ordinary that we can’t even conceive it could be difficult for others.

Still others of us have a couple of kinks.  We look straight enough to the casual observer, but on closer inspection you might find that the motion is a little off.  We get to the side without huge problems, but it isn’t quite as easy as it should be.

There are corkscrews like Pudding.  Sometimes, when I watch her, I wonder if she isn’t more tightly coiled.  I think it must be impossible to swim like that.  Is she just going round in circles?  How long will it take her to get to the side?

Sometimes I have to take a deep breath.  I need to remind myself that it isn’t race.  She isn’t struggling in the water.  In fact, she looks to be having the time of her life.  She doesn’t need to be towed along.  She doesn’t need to be rescued.

Today was one of those days where I needed to remember that her stroke is unique and beautiful.  It doesn’t look like what I think it should.  But she is swimming, and she doesn’t have to go in a straight line to get to the other side.

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

March 2, 2012 at 4:13 pm

6 Responses

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  1. LOVE this post! What a great metaphor for our heroine (another really lovely image by the way!)! My lil guy too has taken to his own rhythm in the pool. He floats easily in a manner that most may take a quick glance at and think that he’s about to drown- hanging in the water vertically, fingers and toes flapping in quick circles, neck extended, with just his face above the surface of the water. He’s completely at ease…completely. But, to the casual observer…well, you know. When he does swim, it’s more like gliding, like floating, like hanging in the water, until he does his back stroke which has emerged completely organically stemming from his complex full-body, flappy shudder. Quite accidentally he learned to swim this way. The excitement, the sensory input, his preferred modality of learning, of being, illicited the shudder, and the shudder in turn propelled him backward. So unique, such a metaphor for life. Thank you so very much for sharing…you’ve given me a new perspective today, and I’m embracing it.

    Aimee Velazquez

    March 2, 2012 at 4:32 pm

  2. That’s great. Swimming is great fun and good exercise. After I swim, I’m exhausted and Jacob sleeps best after we’ve been at the pool.

    Jim Reeve

    March 2, 2012 at 4:36 pm

  3. I love this. While it may not resemble what others might recognise as swimming, it is absolutely, uniquely, Pudding. Aren’t we privileged to be given such beautful life lessons from our children?


    March 2, 2012 at 7:24 pm

  4. I love this. It sums up so beautifully how I feel about my own son and how unique he is. Sometimes its good to remember that different beautiful


    March 3, 2012 at 2:43 am

  5. Awesome metaphor!
    What a beautiful way to view your beautiful daughter’s uniqueness 🙂


    March 3, 2012 at 5:01 am

  6. I also LOVE this post. To often we push and push and push our kids — thinking that they are struggling — when really, they’re just doing things their own way. Maybe I should start carrying around a corkscrew with me to remind me… on the other hand, I’m not sure I want to know what inventive use Little Miss would find for it if she ever stumbled upon said corkscrew!

    Karla (Mom2MissK)

    March 5, 2012 at 3:34 pm

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