We have been in Arkansas seven weeks now. In swim time, that would be three swim meets, at least 17 events, and 80+ hours of practice. I’m not complaining. In fact, I love being a swim mom, mainly because John enjoys swimming so much. He has been setting goals for himself since he started swimming nearly two years ago, and I have been excited to see him meet his goals and set even higher standards.
John has never been one to watch sports on TV or in person. While many kids his age can quote team or individual statistics in basketball, football, and baseball (the big three), John has never paid much attention. I would dare say his own mother knows more about football and basketball than he does. John has played soccer, tee ball, and basketball, and up until he started swimming, liked playing basketball the best. He would much rather play a sport than watch it, except baseball. He hates baseball – watching it and playing it.
Fast-forward to the London 2012 Olympics, and the kid has become obsessed not only with watching the swimmers compete but knowing the world record times for all the events along with trivia about swimmers from other countries. He knows the lingo and why swimmers wear two caps. He can tell you in which event and what year Michael Phelps’ goggles filled up with water. He can spout off when records have been set for events, not only in the world, but in Texas, Arkansas, and for the Little Rock Dolphin-Lasers, his current swim team. He also knows the qualifying times for 13-14 year old zone championships and sectionals.
I am amazed how a non-sports fan like John has turned into an Olympic-watching, swimming statistics junkie. His ultimate goals are to swim at the University of Texas in college and to qualify for the Olympics and haul in a few medals. Whether he swims a few more months or several more years, I’ll enjoy the ride.