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Watering My Baby

On Sunday, the Pumpkin and I went to our first class of Water Babies! My good friend and her baby, who is 15 months old, also went, and it's fun to have a friend to go with. Not that I didn't talk to all the other moms and dads, because I will strike up a conversation with anyone.

Here's how the class went:

Once I got us changed into our bathing suits* and our stuff locked in the locker, we joined the class and headed into the very shallow area of the pool. We sat the babies in the water and dribbled water over their heads to get them used to it. The Pumpkin liked splashing around, but wasn't thrilled with the water dripping into her face.

Then we got colored rings and threw them a little way in front of the babies to get them to crawl to them. I felt like I was playing fetch with my dog, including the part where after the second time, the Pumpkin just kept going. Just like my dog, who says "forget this 'fetch it back' stuff, I'm going to check out what's over there!" But it was really cute and we had fun with this part, because the Pumpkin loves to crawl around in the bath tub and now she had ROOM to crawl! We crawled over to other babies and smiled and splashed a bit, and I kept trying to herd her back to our spot next to my friend. Her baby was just sitting there taking it all in, trying to figure out what the heck everyone was doing.

Then, we went into deeper water. Not deep enough were we could stand and the babies still be in the water, so we all crouched down in the water, holding the babies. The girl who was leading the class then told us how we were to blow in the babies' faces and dunk them under. I was not sure about this, but willing to try. The first time, I think it went okay, the second time the Pumpkin was looking wary, the third time she decided she definitely didn't like it. Neither did my friend's baby, so at least we were not alone.

Next, we put them on the walls and played Humpty Dumpty had a great fall, when we slid the babies off the wall into the water. The Pumpkin thought this was fun at first, but again, started to dislike it as it went on, especially the sitting on the wall part. She was much happier just being in the water and splashing around. And that's what we did mostly for the rest of class. First floating them on their backs, and then on their stomachs, then holding a floating barbel and then the parents blowing bubbles in the water with the babies watching. My girl and my friend's boy both did pretty well during those.

I think the Pumpkin's favorite part was at the end, when we all got in a big circle and went around, singing "Ring Around the Rosy" and dunking them on "all fall down" except that I didn't dunk the Pumpkin. She didn't like being dunked, and I wanted her to enjoy the class, so we just bounced on that part. She thought that was fun, and splashed and giggled. My friend did the dunk like she was supposed to, and her boy let it be known he did!not!like!that! So I was glad that I didn't do the dunk, because I'm sure that the Pumpkin would have started wailing!

All in all, I think it was a fun first class. The Pumpkin loved crawling in the super shallow water and bouncing and splashing in the deeper water. I will try dunking her at least once each class, but I won't push it. We have 5 more classes, and I'm so excited! I LOVE the water and am so glad to be able to share it with her.

*Note: It is very hard to change yourself and your baby in the locker room when you don't want the baby to sit on the floor and she refuses to stand (although she constantly wants to stand every other second of the day). It is a much better idea to wear the bathing suits to rec center under your clothes. Now that I know this, I thought I'd share.


Dana said…
This past Sat my 15mo old and I went to her first water class at the local rec center. I found it enjoyable and I think she liked it just as much. There was a lot of singing which I think made it more fun for the kids. She was taking it all in the whole class and was pretty reserved the entire time just checking out the other kids. But for the last 5 mins when we had a free-time, she really got into it. She loved sitting on the side of the pool while I counted 1-2-3 and into the water she went. I saw her crack a couple smiles. I'm not so keen on dunking her head in either becasue I don't want to scare her. So far I think she's pretty comfortable in the water and that is my goal.

I know what you are talking about in the locker room! That was tricky. I brought her stoller in so that helped a little.

I ended up doing this class by myself after trying to get a couple friends to join me. It just didn't work out for any of them, but to my suprise there was a woman in the class I went to college with! She has a 6mo little girl and I'm looking forward to reconnecting with her.

7 more classes to go!
All that dunking and blowing kind of sounds a bit like baby torture. Alexis if I did some of that to her, but it does sound like fun to play in the shallow end and float around!
ImpostorMom said…
We did a swim class in October and Boog was sort of luke warm on the entire experience. We ended up missing the last two classes because it got really cold and it was just such a hassle to get everyone home and in the nightly routine. I wish it was something they did on the weekends.
OneTiredEma said…
Sounds fun.

We've been intending to do swim classes with the kids (actually as a daddy-kid project) for a couple years at least.

Sigh. Maybe this summer.
limboland la la said…
i like the community aspect of seems like there would be a little less chaos than a bunch of babies and mama's at an indoor play session (is that naive of me to think).

bet she'll end up loving water like you...i was always jealous of your swimming prowess (in a survival instinct sort-of-jealous way :) ) for some reason i always thought the point was to hold your breath as long as you could... never did figure out that's why i could only swim about half a lap. :)
Cara said…
Definitely baby torture. I don't beleive that babies will learn tohold their breath, but its things like this that lead to me being terrified of water from a tender age. I didn't learn to swim until I was 20 because of some well-meaning baby water torture. If pumpkin doesn't like dunking, you're right not to do it.

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