"Mommy, there's water on my legs!!!"
(Said my 4 year old, rear facing toddler, with his life jacket on.)
"Oh honey, we're in a paddle boat, that's normal.........
Wait a second..."
The entire back of the paddle boat was capsizing.
It was a beautiful day on the lake, and my husband decided it would be fun to take out the boat as a family.
I'm always game for a leg workout, so I said why not.
Just a day earlier, I took out the kayak with my niece, Sophie,
And my son, Oliver, and husband, Eric, took out that same paddle boat.
When my husband and son were on it, because of the weight distribution, my son's side wasn't fully low in the water.
But with my husband on one side, myself on the other, and our little guy in the backseat, both sides were in.
What we didn't realize is that my side (or my son's side the day earlier)
Had a HUGE crack under the seat.
(The note from the cottage owners read- enjoy the paddle boats, kayaks, and canoes!)
I thought it was a little odd that we weren't moving very far with as much effort as we were putting in, but I'm not the expert on paddle boats.
The more we peddled, the more water our boat took in, without us knowing.
As the water started to fill the back, and it was almost completely underwater, we grabbed our son and hauled him into the front.
He started shaking and crying.
It was only a matter of seconds before the whole boat was going under.
Without even thinking, I threw off my bathing suit cover and sandals, threw on my life jacket, and jumped in.
I was either towing us back to shore, or if the whole boat sunk, I was taking my toddler in, rescue style.
( I knew hubby had his life jacket and could swim.)
As soon as I jumped out, the boat levelled above water.
"Stay in the boat with Oliver."
I grabbed the strings and with the most powerful side stroke,
Towed a 220 pound husband, 50 pound toddler, and I'm guessing about 150 pound paddle boat with water inside about a half a mile to shore.
"Mommy, you're so strong."
"Mommy, THIS IS FUN!"
Little did he know I was flustered, but I KNEW I could make it to shore.
I knew my thick thighs, strong core, and strong swimming skills ( My first job was a lifeguard at 15) would not fail me.
I knew my job as a mamma protector bear would come through.
Could my husband have jumped in and done the same? Most likely, yes.
But I knew, without question, I was strong enough to do it,
(And we didn't have time to have a pissing match about what to do.)
I cursed earlier in the day about my Beachbody on Demand workouts not working as the internet was in and out ( should have downloaded them before hand).
Maybe that was karma getting back at me,
Because that WAS a workout.
I'll never forget the feeling of safety and accomplishment when we hit that shore,
And I swear I'll never hate on my body again.
It saved my family.
And we left a kind note to the owners of the cottage rental saying,
"Your paddle boat is broken!"
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