Monday, August 1, 2016

Are You a Water Baby?

Keli Gwyn here with an admission: I'm not comfortable in the water.

I come by my fear of the water naturally. Neither of my parents was fond of being in the water. My mom summoned her courage and learned to swim when I was around eight years old. My dad never did learn.

Although I can swim, I'm not a very good swimmer. I didn't learn until I was in high school.

The first day of our swimming unit in P. E. class, the teacher told us to get in the water. Being an obedient oldest child, I did. We were then told to swim a lap. I just stood there.

I'll never forget the look on the teacher's face. She stared at me in disbelief. "You don't know how to swim, do you?" she asked. I shook my head. I'm pretty sure she was shaking hers, too.

That incredibly patient teacher spent the next few weeks making a swimmer out of me. While my friends were logging laps, diving into the deep end and having a blast, I was alone in the shallow end mastering the dog paddle. Talk about humiliating.

I took lessons at the local pool the following summer, determined to avoid future embarrassment. My parks and recreation class consisted of students half my age. I persevered and mastered all the strokes. The side and back strokes are my favorites to this day. Why? Because they don't require me to put my face in the water.

The hero and heroine of my August Love Inspired Historical, Make-Believe Beau, know a lot about water. The hero, Flynt Kavanaugh, is an irrigation engineer. Jessie Sinclair, the heroine, is working as his draftswoman. They and the rest of Flynt's team are helping design the El Dorado Canal, which brought--and still brings--water from the Sierras to the Foothills below, where I live.

Thanks to the efforts of the real men who built the canal, I enjoy water in my glass or in the tub. I give swimming pools and other bodies of water a wide berth to this day.

Questions for You

Do you enjoy swimming?

If so, what is your favorite stroke?

Are you a swimming pool person, or do you prefer lakes or oceans?

(Swimming pool credit here. Canal image is in the public domain)
The Courtship Charade

As a draftswoman in a man’s world, Jessica Sinclair causes a stir as her new male colleagues vie for her attention. And the company manager has an ultimatum: fake a courtship with her boss, Flynt Kavanaugh…or lose her job. But pretending to be smitten with the handsome engineer unleashes a real, complicated attraction—and could reveal the past she hoped to keep hidden.

Jessica is certainly the best person for the job. But as their make-believe romance escalates, Flynt knows that’s not the only reason he wants her on his team. However, with his past shrouded by a shameful secret, Flynt has always focused his ambitions on building a career, not a family. Now he has designs on Jessica’s heart, but can they trust each other with the truth?
Copyright © 2016 by Harlequin Enterprises Limited
Cover art and cover copy text used by arrangement with Harlequin Enterprises Limited.
® and ™ are trademarks owned by Harlequin Enterprises Limited
or its affiliated companies, used under license.


Jackie Smith said...

I am not fond of water either!! Took swimming lessons as a child, but did not accomplish much!
Can't wait to read your newest!!!

Keli Gwyn said...

It sounds like we're of like mind when it comes to water, Jackie. I see people enjoying themselves in a pool or a lake, but I can't summon their enthusiasm. Give me dry land any day.

Susan P said...

I am not fond of water either. I grew up never swimming - living on a farm there was no time or place to swim. My parents gave us swimming lessons, but that didn't help with there being no place to use what I had learned. Then when I was 8 I was at a class pool party and went down the slide. I had swimmies on - but as soon as I hit the water they went up to my hands and I stayed under. Thankfully another mom saw and pulled me out. I never went into water again until my later teenage years and stayed far away from any deep end. When I started having kids it hit me that I didn't want them to end up like me. I told myself, logically, if I'm in a pool there is a bottom. I can push myself up if I touch that bottom. I have no reason to be scared. I know how to tread water and taught myself to not be scared - it was a change of mindset. So we made sure our kids had chances to swim and learn. Now, we live in a house with an inground pool and my kids are fish. I love it. They swim circles around many adults. LOL. Thanks for sharing, Keli! I know your feeling. :) (I still don't like water, but I am ok in it - I love my dry land, too!)

Keli Gwyn said...

Susan, I'm sorry you had that traumatic experience in the pool when you were a child. I think something like that would make anyone leery of being a body of water again. I admire you for pushing through your fears and seeing to it that your children are comfortable in the water.

Like you, I was determined not to pass my fear of the water on to our daughter. I enrolled her in swimming lessons when she was a preschooler and kept up with them for summers after that. We have a city pool, and I saw to it that she had plenty of swim dates with her friends. As was the case with your children, the plan succeeded. Our daughter, now an adult, loves to swim.

Pamela Tracy said...

My son is a water baby.
Me, I'm a lot like you. I learned when I was older. In Nebraska, backyard pools, at least in my neighborhood were not in existence. The pubic pool was so full all you could do was stand in place and jump, or use the board LOL.

Keli Gwyn said...

Pamela, it's nice to have a child who feels comfortable in the water, isn't it? That gave me peace of mind as a mom.

I can understand why you didn't get much swimming experience when you were growing up. I had a few friends with swimming pools when I was growing up, but not many. The public pool could get pretty full, but I'd go with my sisters, which gave me people to hang out with. We were more interested in cooling off from our toasty California summers, so we'd find a corner and claim it. Fun times!

Jennifer said...

I am not a water person what so ever but I have taught myself a pretty good doggy paddle I have to say. When I lived in WI there wasn't much places to swim so I never thought I'd be able to teach my boys to swim so when we moved to Ky and moved onto a Christian Camp where there was a pool I immediately I was determined to get my boys in it. At first they were terrified but now they swim circles around me and they have so much confidence. Jenny

Hi Ladies!!!!!!

Keli Gwyn said...

Jenny, learning to swim is hard when they're aren't places to do it. I admire you for teaching your sons to swim despite your own hesitation.