Screamer Update

Friday, October 30, 2015
Today I am grateful to share a much requested update on the story from October 8, where I lost my hearing from a screaming swim student. Go back and check it out if you haven’t read it. The easiest place is the blog at and look for “Hearing”.

The little screamer came to the next class, but I was sick and not there. The lifeguard told me she screamed through that entire class, too, but was not even allowed to get too close to the pool because of the noise and distraction. She sat on a line nearby or the bench or someplace where she wouldn’t even get wet. Still, she screamed.

The following week I was there but she was not. Whew!!! Dodged that one! Then this morning as I was walking in the building, the little urchins were marching to the hallway where they leave their bags before coming into the pool area. Screamer was there, looking behind her, at the ceiling, at the floor, banging into other kids. . . they were ALL banging into each other. “Look where you’re going, not where you’ve been,” I said. And they looked at me as if I was a stranger. . .the big ‘ol lady they have never seen on dry land, with dry hair and clothing and a normal voice.

I think I freaked them out because for once I had their attention. I stopped them and asked, “Who has their good listening ears with them today?” Their mouths hung open. Including the screamer. Oh boy. Whoop-dee-doo! This is going to be good.
As they were tumbling into the pool area the lifeguard said to me, “I don’t think she’s here. I don’t see her. She’s not here.” But I knew it was wishful thinking. . .because I had already seen her.

I started class as I usually do, with, “Where is my good morning?” then had them move up to the water’s edge. The guard and I paid close attention to the screamer. She moved nearly as far as she was supposed to. I had the others get in the pool so I could focus on her. “Okay, Sweetie, it’s your turn. You need to scooch up to the edge and put your feet in the pool. I’m right here.”

She did it. No screams. No “I can’t’s”. No hesitation. Then she kicked. She reached and pulled through the water. She used the kickboard without me holding her. She blew bubbles. She let go of my arms while she was on her back and even moved her arms, enduring my bad rendition of “Twinkle-twinkle”. The lifeguard and I spent the entire class shrugging our shoulders and rolling our eyes. We almost had to go into time-out! Such behavior.

Then she jumped in the pool. . .with a little help. . .but she jumped! Really? Yes, really! During playtime, with a bubble around her waist, a noodle under her arms and another held in her hands out in front of her, I said, “It’s nice to see you having fun in the pool.”

I was sure to stay close by and when a beach ball came flying our way, I asked her “ARE you having fun in the pool?” She let go of the extra noodle, smacked the ball with both hands and got a big grin on her face. I guess that’s a “yes”. I’m going to have to change her name from “screamer” to “griner”. Whew! Dodged that one!

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