Incase you hadn’t noticed, my kids are swimmers. In the winter, they swim for our local YMCA team and this past weekend was the East Field South District Championships. It was the culmination of the winter swim season.
All season long they try to get “district cut times” so they can swim at this particular meet. They have to swim a certain event faster than a certain time to qualify. Maggie’s pretty good at making the cut times. She qualified in 12 events, Lilly qualified in seven and Adam in three. We try to stress the importance of making districts because once they are there; they are little fish in a huge pool. Steins are decent swimmers, but not Olympians in the making.
While Lilly took nearly 3 seconds off her 100 yard backstroke at districts, she placed 36th out of 55, and although Maggie took a whopping 14 seconds off her 1000 yard freestyle, she placed 21st out of 22 swimmers.
We focus on the successes — the time they take off an already impressive time. Adam was seeded dead last in the 50 yard freestyle. He just barely made the cut but at districts he shaved a half second off his time and moved up 10 spots from 61st to 51st place. We thought that was pretty cool.
While all three had some great successes last weekend, they all had swims that were not so great too. By Sunday, Lilly was pretty tuckered out from balancing both a lacrosse tournament and swimming. She added three seconds to her 100 yard breaststroke — the event she was seeded the highest in. She was a little disappointed but she didn’t let it bother her too much. And that made me proud as well. It’s pretty cool when your kids handle disappointment with aplomb.
Maggie’s best friend from swimming is an amazing athlete. She earned two firsts, three seconds and five thirds at districts. It was pretty exciting and Maggie cheered her on the whole time, never once showing any signs of envy. That warmed my heart as well.
It was a rough weekend for the Stein parents. There were late nights and early mornings and lots and lots of driving. The season has meant numerous hours spent poolside and hundreds of trips between the Y and home, but there have been so many benefits far beyond the swimming. I can see how my kids are growing as people and that makes it so worth it.
FranklyStein is a blog by Chesapeake Family Magazine editor Betsy Stein who lives in Catonsville with her husband, Chris, and four children, Maggie, 14, Lilly, 12, Adam, 12, and Jonah, 8.