Mom pleads for parents to enroll their kids to swim lessons
Nicole, Levi's mom, created the "water guardian" tag—a lanyard that can be worn by an adult that acts as a designated guardian to swimming kids. Now, she's urging the parents to enroll their kids to swimming lessons. This is so they wouldn't experience what she went through, pulling her son's lifeless body out of the water.
Nicole and her husband have girls that learned to swim by the age of 3. When it came to Levi, they decided to push it back until he was 4 as he didn't seem ready for it yet.
Six weeks after Levi turned 3, the family went on a trip to Alabama. Nicole had split a brownie with him as he eagerly awaited going on a nighttime crab hunt. There, the 3 year old Levi managed to slip away from his parents. He was later found floating face down in a pool, lifeless.
Now, Nicole is urging mothers to enroll their children in swim lessons.
The dangers of not knowing how to swim
Swimming is not the same as soccer, dance or other sports offered on summer programs. Drowning is the number 1 cause of death of ages 1-4 as many in this age group can't swim. If a child can "swim" but only with a flotation device, that is not swimming.
"It is important to remember that ALL SWIM LESSONS ARE NOT CREATED EQUALLY. If you lack access to quality options, choose the best private instructor you can find. It should not take years for your child to learn to swim. Once they can swim, keep them in lessons, because drowning is a lifelong risk." Nicole added.
In their area of East TN, not much swim options for toddlers were given. This is why they chose to get private lessons for their girls when they turned 3. Nicole now wishes she could turn back time and enroll Levi in one as well.
There are hesitations and limitations when it comes to extracurricular activities like swim lessons. Most parents weigh every decision on three things - time, finances, and their own parenting energy.
- Time - Nicole would rather make time for the swim lessons than to have to spend this lifetime without her son. Every moment her son isn't there, every bedtime kisses Levi would miss is the eternity of time that stretches before Nicole.
- Money - Money is a luxury and most of parents' lives are spent on a budget. Luckily, many non-profits offer scholarships. Nicole urges parents to ask for swim lessons instead of gifts. "Exhaust every option - budget and beg. The cost of swim lessons is a fraction of a funeral" according to Nicole.
- Parenting energy - The child may hate swim lessons itself no matter how gentle-yet-persistent. Just consider that crying is breathing and is much better than the silence that comes with lifelessness. "On the night my world ended, I only heard silence by the pool. I would have given my life to hear my son crying." Nicole recalls.
"Please enroll your toddler in the RIGHT swim lessons, ones that focus on water competency. 'Survival' is the goal." Nicole urges. She ends her post with photos of Levi wearing a puddle jumper which is considered the safest flotation device for kids, according to the US Coast Guard. The photos were taken on June 10, 2018 as they unknowingly marched to the end. "Please don't wait on swim lessons."
Source: Pop Sugar