I know that if the people around me don’t feel comfortable, it’s mainly because I don’t explain to them why my behavior is so peculiar. It’s been like this for years. I’ve only swam 300 yards and I already slapped two people in the face, touched someone’s derriere (not sure if it was a man or a woman), and hit my head on the wall. Gosh, I hate crowded pools!
But I know that when I go home tonight, I will be proud of myself. For many years I’ve let that sort of discomfort prevent me from doing the things I love, but now I finally accepted to laugh about it. Sure, my shoulder is a little bloody because I swim too close to the wall, sometimes the coach has to single me out to explain a drill, but these are little things, growing pains, nothing more.
Let’s be honest, it’s not crowded pools that I hate, I just don’t like to face my demons. There is a little voice inside me that keep saying: “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry …”. But most of the time I manage to put it way in the background, and all I keep thinking is “you’re kicking butt Charles”.
By the end of the workout I know the people in my lane, some of them seem very inspired. At first I was afraid to look strange, to feel different, now I feel special. I wish I could have learned that many, many years ago. Perhaps I can teach it to other people facing similar issues.