Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Boys Will Be Boys

When Andrew was about David's age, we stopped by the local TCBY for a cool treat on an especially warm evening. We pulled up to the window, gave our order and were waiting for the cones to appear when Andrew announced from the back seat, "She's HOT."

After the realization that Andrew was taking about the fit, sun-kissed, teenager with blond hair pulled back into a pony tail who had taken our order and not me, his beloved (and, if I do say so myself, extremely cute) Mother, I was quick to scold him. I am not sure why I reacted the way I did. I suppose I was just surprised that, at such a tender young age, Andrew had learned to use that adjective, the same one I typically reserve for describing temperature, to describe members of the opposite sex. To hear my husband tell the story, I shot an accusing glance his way before I launched into a speech about more polite ways to describe people as attractive.

Michael Phelps was the male swimmer of the yea...Image via Wikipedia
David is currently enrolled in his third session of adaptive swimming lessons. All the kids in the class have some sort of disability and the objective is simply to teach them how to swim back to the side of the pool safely. They are not trying to find the next Michael Phelps in the group, just preparing them for a time when they might find themselves in water over their heads. I must admit I haven't yet given up on the idea of David winning Olympic swimming medals, but I guess we need to take first things first.

Michael has been taking David to all of the lessons this session because of the locker room dilemma. At six, David is past the age when he can come into the women's locker room with me and I obviously cannot go into the men's—nor would I want to. I haven't been in a men's locker room since I accidentally wandered through the wrong door at the YMCA after my swimming lesson years ago and I am still traumatized by the experience.

Anyway, since it is so cold and David cannot come out to the car wearing his suit, Michael currently has swim lesson duty. I had been feeling sorry for him having to take David to all of the lessons until he happened to mention, in passing, like it was no big deal and he had most certainly mentioned it before, that David's swim teacher this session wears a bikini.

I often wonder what David is thinking. His language has certainly come a long way, but there still is an incredible gap in our ability to communicate with each other. Does he, like his brother did at the same age, look at this fit, attractive, bikini-clad woman and think to himself, "She's HOT." He loves to go to the pool and asks about it almost every day. By all accounts, he gleefully buckles the belt to his Aqua Jogger Junior before he paddles all over the pool for the entire 30 minutes. And as for the question of being able to make it back to the side of the pool safely, I am confident the odds would increase exponentially if his teacher were standing on the pool deck, cheering him on.