Last month Patrick, the kids and I were at his sister’s house for a party. Everyone gathered in the backyard while the DeAngelo, Maya and their little cousins jumped in the pool to swim. I was in my power embroidery phase and worked furiously on my Frida-inspired pillowcase for the DIY segment while listening to family members chat about the latest news.
I remember looking up and watching the kids splash around in the water. It was about 106 that evening and the water looked so inviting. But, being a plus-size mom, and with all of my in-laws watching, there was NO way on God’s green Earth that I would get in that water. I felt sad inside. I craved the days of being young and crazy enough to just go dive in without caring who would see. Sometimes being an adult sucks.
Yesterday was my mom-in-law’s birthday and we all took her out to dinner. I had my TV segment earlier in the day and had gone to the party straight from work, so I was in a nice black skirt and a pretty purple blouse with sequins sewn on in an Eastern Indian-type pattern. It’s my favorite blouse these days. I had two glasses of wine (I rarely drink!) and was feeling pretty darn good. After dinner we went to Patrick’s sister’s house again for birthday pineapple upside cake. I plopped myself on the couch and released a heavy sigh. It was 111 degrees. Out of the corner of my eye I saw it. The gleam of the moonlight skimming the top of the water in the pool.
It entranced me. I stood up, glided out the arcadia door, stood at the edge of the pool and felt the hot breeze of the oncoming monsoon pass over my body. Maya stood next to me in jeans and a t-shirt.
“Jump in with me. OK?” I asked her, never taking my eyes off the water.
“Ha! You’re crazy! Mom. No way. Are you serious?” she replied in disbelief.
“Yes. Let’s just do it!”
“But we are in our clothes!”
We exchanged visual confirmation, held hands, counted to three and jumped in the pool – right there in front of ALL my IN-LAWS, whose jaws dropped to the floor.
“That’s what I call Stage Four.” Patrick explained, referring to the various stages I go through after drinking any alcoholic beverage.
“At least she left her clothes on…” I thought I heard someone whisper.
Right then, all the kids let out a heatwave war cry, stripped to their shorts and did supersize cannonballs in the pool with me. I held my skirt down to shield my chubby white legs and let myself float on my back while I gazed at the stars and the swooshing trees. The water muffled all the outside sound and for a few minutes, I was in ultimate LaLa Land bliss.
After 15 years of marriage, Patrick’s family knows I’m a nut at times and were totally cool about it. Patrick looked at me with a look I’ve never seen, a really fun look, like a “Wow, I never knew you’d do THAT” kind of look. Overall, my impromptu swimming session felt sooo good. It was healing, not only because of the heat, but just because it released so much internal pressure and excitement anxiety that had been building over the events of the summer.
I know you are thinking, “OK, so. If I invite Kathy to my house and I have a pool, will she jump in with her office clothes on?”
No, I won’t. It was just one of those “in the moment” kind of things. But I highly suggest giving it a try!