So last week the four of us went over to my brother and sister-in-law’s new house. It has a super-cool in-ground pool, a super-fun swing set (with a spiral slide!) and an awesome sandbox area — a gorgeous
dinner-time and my brother was at the grill and Craig was outside with
the kiddos (Bella – 4.5, Lila 3 and Brody 2.) I was inside with Vivienne
and my sister-in-law.
kids weren’t swimming, they were in their regular clothes playing in
the sandbox having fun. Craig and my brother were watching them and Craig was
looking around the new backyard and wandered over to the grill area — just steps away from the kids — and
was remarking to my brother how much storage space the grill-area had
when he and my brother heard Bella yelling, “Lila is drowning! Lila is
looked and Lila was under water in the deep end of the pool — arms stretched up to the
sky with a look of what Craig tells me was sheer terror on her face.
She was treading water, but
she was still about 2 inches below the surface.
Of course, Craig jumped
into the water in his clothes and pulled our baby out of the water; compressed her chest as he held her
and she coughed up water.
heard her crying and ran outside and saw my husband and daughter
together, soaking wet. Her screaming and him holding her as closely as he
possibly could. The look on his face terrified me and the look on her face was even worse.
S E C O N D S.
is absolutely and positively hyper about keeping his eyes on our girls
when they’re around/in water; more so than I, if I were being honest. And in this instance, he
literally looked away for no longer than 20 or so seconds. He was within 8 feet
of the kids and didn’t hear a 3-year-old, 28-lb
little girl slip into the water.
This was not Craig’s fault. Nor was it my brother’s fault. My brother happens to be an amazing Dad and an incredible uncle.
It was an accident and it literally happened in seconds.
Drowning is responsible for more deaths among children 1-4 than any other cause except congenital anomalies (birth defects).
we got into the car to leave my brother’s house that night, Craig, who
incidentally never says my name, looked straight ahead as I was driving
“Kylee. I have never, ever been so scared in my life. Ever. The look on
cried because I was so very thankful that God answered our
daily prayer of placing a protective bubble around our children. And then I
cried because in seconds, in just SECONDS our whole entire lives could
have changed. And then I cried the next day when I thought about it. And today, a week later – I still cry because I’m a Mom.
Children ages 1 to 4 have the highest drowning rates, my friends.
There’s more horribly frightening but necessary information about water safety here.
And yes, we’re researching swim lessons for Lila now; the need for swim education was just propelled to the top of the “MUST” list. It should be at the top of yours, too.
How is Lila today? Totally fine. In fact, she was fine 10 minutes later. She knows she fell in the pool and that “Daddy jumped in and saved me!” She doesn’t appear to be adversely affected; it was me who kept crying that night and the next day. 🙂
She also is totally excited about swim lessons so that “when I fall in the pool again I can save me.”
Friends: Be vigilant around water.
SECONDS. Just seconds.