Learning how to swim at 23…

On Monday I done something I never thought I would be able to do…swim.

Why am I only learning now?

When I was about 5/6 years old I was in New York with family who fortunately had a swimming pool in their garden. At this time I hadn’t got any swimming lessons. Mamma gill of course had me in a little ring so I could enjoy the water with everyone else. Me being me and the little brat that I was decided to take off the ring from around me (when nobody was looking). Surprise surprise I went downnnnnnn . My mum had to jump in to get me and to this day (although I was very young), I still remember that fear and remember the fear on my mothers face. My arse was red after that let me tell you!

Since then my mum never forced me to do any lessons as she knew I was really uncomfortable and I would cry the house down if I was made go. However there came a time when I was about 12 that she brought me to lessons in the local pool. The trainer was just useless. She knew I was uncomfortable so she just let me ponder about in the shallow end doing nothing instead of encouraging me to try. At the time I thought it was great!

When I met Mike things changed! He’s a fully trained divemaster i.e he’s a fish. For me not to be able to swim was simply…. not good. On one of our first holidays we had our own pool and he managed to get me floating. Since then it’s been a bit of an uphill struggle for him and me! However this year I made a New Years resolution (yes it’s still in motion) that I would learn how to swim. I didn’t do anything about it from January until June, as with most New Year resolutions! But when we booked our holiday for Thailand this November, it really forced me to think how much more I could enjoy this holiday if I knew how to swim. Obviously throwing in the fact I would be able to save myself also came into play.

I’m a member of Virgin Active gym and almost every morning I’m there and I see people going off swimming at their leisure while I plod away on the gym floor.

I knew they had lessons for kids but I did not want to go into a group because..

1. I would totally embarrass myself


2. 3 year olds would get frustrated with me!

I got one to one lessons with the AMAZING Ziba at VA Swiss Cottage and boy does she have the patience of a saint.  I was with her solidly for the month of July and practiced by myself for the month of August. August was tough, I was running in the mornings, followed by work, followed by swim and then trying to do some blogging but also having some form of social life. I was determined though. They say it’s easier for a kid to learn how to swim but I think it’s because they don’t have a choice, an adult can decide oh I’m too tired I’m not going to go today where as a parent will not let those excuses get in the way.

It wasn’t all plain sailing when I was practicing by myself. There were times where I was like this is pointless I’m not able to do this, I wanted to cry, I did cry – I also kicked an old person. That wasn’t on purpose though! I was paddling along and he came out of nowhere and he got my foot in his face. The shame, oh the shame.

Monday was my first session back since I saw Ziba at the end of July. She could immediately see my progression and decided to take the float away from my grip of death. Initially I was like this is not happening, but I slowly came round to it and bobs your uncle I WAS SWIMMING.  I was literally over the moon and just in pure shock that I actually done it after all this time.

I just wanted to write this post because I know I’m not the only one. I’ve gone through so much trying to learn and trust me if I can do it, you can do it. It’s all down to commitment and practice.

If you want to ask me any questions feel free to get in touch or leave a comment below.




Snapchat: gillk4



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