2.4 mile swim race
bde maka ska
open swim classic
Third time’s the charm. The first year I tried swimming this race, I had just been diagnosed with juvenile macular degeneration and the lake was too foggy for me to see anything–they almost cancelled it–so I had to drop out. The second year, I displaced my kneecap and my physical therapist advised me not to try swimming it. This year I almost wimped out because of sore legs, but I didn’t. I thought about how much I’ve wanted to swim this race and how I wanted to set a good example for my daughter and I did it. I swam it. I couldn’t see anything because of my vision and all of the water in my goggles, but I found someone else to follow and we made it all the way around the lake. I think she might have led us off track–my watch shows that I swam an extra 500 yards–but we made it and, according to Scott, I got 4th place.
What do I remember about my swim:
- googles, filled up with water
- rocks mixed in with sand on the beach floor
- shallow water–starting the race and walking for the first 15-20 seconds. Heard one swimmer joke, “I thought this was a swimming race, not a walking race!”
- clear water, checking out the Eurasian watermilfoil just below me
- not being able to see anything but water and an occasional buoy
- feeling like I (and the 2 other swimmers I was swimming with) were the only people in the lake
- having no idea how far I had gone or how much farther I had to go
- the swimmer next to me and the pink shoulders of her tri suit and white rims of her goggles
- thinking: I’m actually doing this! yay me!
- the shocking cold of the water as I entered and the feeling that I couldn’t breathe
- watching the swimmer ahead of me stop to look where she was going and thinking: please don’t stop, I have no idea where I’m going or where the next buoy is!
- before the race, overhearing a woman with a cast on her broken feet telling another swimmer: “I broke it at my daughter’s wedding. The doctor told me I couldn’t swim in the race and I thought that was unacceptable, so I’m here and I’ve rigged up something for my foot so I can swim.” What a badass.
- feeling strong and proud and tired and happy to be done
- a slightly aching shoulder