My husband and I walked behind the little ones and enjoyed their excitement. They thought that it was so "cool" that the whole pool was empty and even the lifeguards were gone. Our seven year old son jumped right in and I turned back to smile towards my husband at how thrilled they all were.
Just then, I heard another splash. When I looked at my husband, his face turned into pure panic. Our other two boys were now beside him walking towards me so that meant that the second splash of someone jumping in was our three year old little girl. She always wears her floaties to keep her above the water but they were in my husband's hands. She must not have realized that she wasn't wearing them as she jumped in after her brother.
I literally went numb and turned to run towards the pool with all that I had. Everything went into slow motion and I couldn't seem to get there fast enough. I could see her little body under the water and started to yell for our seven year old to get to her while I ran. My husband shot towards the pool as I jumped in. When I reached for her I was able to grab her arm and pull her up out of the water. She looked at me with the widest eyes, took a huge breath and then started to laugh. My hand to God she laughed and said, "Mommy, that was fun!"
I carried her out of the water, sat down with her to make sure she was ok and realized that I was shaking from the adrenaline that must have been pushed through me. I was a lifeguard back in the day but never in a million years thought I would have to jump in after my own child.
My husband and I sat with her for a bit and tried to calm down while all she wanted to do was hop back in. We suited her up in her floaties, I peeled off all of my soaking wet clothes and shoes and we got back into the pool trying not to let the kids know how completely freaked out we both were.
It ended up being a good night with the whole pool to ourselves on a perfect summer evening. It was a strong reminder of what's important in life though. It's crazy and scary how fast things can happen. We need to love and cherish each day that we have and spend time with our family and friends.
I'll have to say that I hugged our little girl a lot tighter at bedtime last night and said a huge prayer of thanks.
I think that my husband will agree that maybe tonight we might just go to the park instead of swimming. I know it scared us a whole lot more than it did our kids though.
It will be a while before I'll be able to stop the urge of being a little more overprotective of our little one now. When we got home from the pool last night and got them ready for bed, I jokingly asked my husband if it would be too much to put her in her floaties while she sat in the bathtub.