Early Saturday morning, I went to join other members
on the near north side of Indy. I've been doing this
for just over a year now. When I first went to Rivi, I could
not swim a full length of the pool (fifty yards)
without stopping about half way to
catch my breath
gather my nerve. On this day, I did most of
the workout and was slightly chagrined
that the coach on deck did not ask me for more.
We began at eight in the morning and,
ninety minutes later, as I dried off in the spring-like
morning air, I looked over to see the little mermaid
floating in one of the kiddie pools.
While a cartoonist's version of a female figure,
she nevertheless reflected the same version
of the body I still dream of attaining;
even in late middle age, I find myself affected
by years of social conditioning that
I need to look a certain way in order to
be attractive to men. What the hell?
This time a year ago, I could not swim
seventy-five feet. I've since lost weight amounting
to five dress sizes, I can swim over a mile
without stopping, and I'm looking for more distance;
I want to swim three miles in the near future,
over six miles as the next goal, with longer-distance
open water swims as a main goal.
But, really, I still just want to be pretty.