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When I lost my cool at the pool!

Updated: Mar 13



Monday afternoon was our first swimming lesson since the Christmas holidays.

 

Our routine this year has slightly changed, and Monday was the first day ‘trying it out’.

 

Previously hubby would meet me at the pool and after the lessons the boys would shower and get into their pjs before going home.


This year however, hubby is unable to meet us so I decided to try just going straight to the car after the lesson (and nix the shower and pjs).

 

I thought it would be easy. They all went off to their respective lessons, happy with their new teachers. They had a blast and were pretty much smiling the whole way through.


Me, I was ready to go... I had their towels and shoes all lined up ready for them at 4.35pm.


Towels and shoes ready to go
Getting ready to leave the pool

Unfortunately, things did not go smoothly.

 

Mr. 3 finished his lesson earlier than the other two and wanted to swim in the pool while he was waiting. I didn’t let him, and so by the time the older two finished their lessons he was beside himself!

 

While I was comforting him, saying all the right things, Mr. 7 had sat himself down on the chair and was waiting patiently. Mr. 5 on the other hand had promptly snuck off and taken himself to the toddler pool for some more play time.

 

I knew he was safe in there and could keep an eye on him while I tried to calm down Mr. 3 – by offering him some cheezels (it worked!)

 

Mr. 5 however refused to get out of the pool. I caught his eye, I motioned ‘come here’, I yelled out it was time to go…. he was enjoying splashing around, and being cheeky!

 

I could feel my tension rising. I could feel my patience leaving me… Have you ever been in this situation? When your kid just won’t get out of the pool?

 

In my frustration, I lost my cool. I did the only thing left I could think of… I took of my shoes and I stormed into the water, fully clothed, to get him out – much to his disapproval.


It was most definitely not my proudest parenting moment. I was feeling so angry! How dare he go back in the water when I had told him not to? How dare he not come out when I asked him to?

 

I spent a good five minutes huffing and puffing and feeling angry. All four of us marched to the car. Me in my rage, Mr. 5 in tears and Mr. 3 and Mr. 7 following quietly behind (eating cheezels).

 

I continued my lectures as I buckled them into their seats. I sat in the driver's seat, sent a furious angry text to my husband about how mad and annoyed I was...

 

And then I paused…..

 

Nina after leaving the pool

And then I took a breath….

 

And then I looked in the rearview mirror at my little boy…

 

And I considered things from his perspective….


This was a new routine for him.


Playing in the pool is absolutely one of his favourite things to do.


It was an extremely hot day and he simply wasn't ready to go home yet.


 

And then I asked myself some questions…

 

Why was I hell bent on leaving the pool straight after lessons? What’s wrong with a play afterwards? What am I needing right now? What's more important? My lectures or our connection?

 

I turned to the boys and apologised for getting so angry. I explained how stressed I was feeling about leaving the pool. I explained how annoyed I was that my clothes were all wet.

 

I asked them if next week they would like to stay at the pool and play for bit before we go home… this was met with a resounding YES, all round!

 

We talked about our plan for next week, that we would stay and play for 15 minutes afterwards, we talked about the importance of staying together and keeping safe. We said our little catch cry of 'Go Team Visic!'

 

We drove home, and all anger, resentment and stress had completely left my body (my clothes were still wet though).

 

I was feeling calm, I was happy, and best of all, my boys were happy too!


Even though, as I said earlier, walking in the pool fully clothed and pulling my son out of the water wasn't my proudest parenting moment, I was able to pause, take a breath, show my self compassion and talk it through with my sons.

 

I am feeling optimistic about how next week will pan out, I’ll keep you posted how it all goes!



When I reflected back on the afternoon later that night, I realised that back in the day, 'losing my cool' would have lead to a horrible evening full of anger, resentment, yelling and frustration.


Now tho, I am able to call upon my mindful parenting training and am able to turn the afternoon and evening around, and so that everyone can go to bed feeling happy and loved.


If you would like to learn more about Mindful Parenting, and how it can help you bring back your calm after you have lost it, I invite you to join me in the Mindful Parents Mindful Kids Membership.


You can click on the link below to find out more!


Nina holding 'I am Calm' Affirmation Card

Written by Nina Visic

17th January 2023



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