I was recently reminded of a very important lesson in life. My daughter put herself in danger of drowning because she pushed herself and her limits too far.
First off, my daughter is an incredibly strong swimmer for an almost 8 year old. One of the best I've ever seen. She's going to be amazing on a swim team some day. Over the 4th of July holiday, we were in the pool with some family visiting and she was showing off her ability to swim underwater and hold her breath. She can swim all the way down and back in the pool without needing a breath! After a few times, she didn't take much rest and went to do it again and this time, got about halfway back when she passed out underwater.
Thankfully, my wife and I were right there to scoop her out of the water and administer care. I know it seems like I am casually writing this story, but I cannot explain the terror that went through me as I pulled what seemed like her lifeless body from the water. I immediately noticed she had a pulse and was moving a little, but I got her down and started a couple breaths into CPR and she came to. She did not spit up any water or show signs of water in her lungs and after about 10 mins was completely awake and back to normal. We then took her to the ER and stayed for several hours while they monitored her and then discharged her with a clean bill of health.
There are so many lessons I can speak to from this experience and probably will in a future Lessons for Hannah episode, but a very important one that everyone can learn from is to understand your limits. After she was back to normal, I asked her what she remembered right before things happened. She told me she remembered her lungs hurting, but she thought she could make it - and then everything went black.
She passed out because she did not heed the warning signs of her lungs' limits. When they started hurting her, she should have immediately come up for air, but she decided to push things without understanding the limits she had. Of course, this is after repeated conversations with mom and dad over time about how to be safe in the pool, etc.
And that is the hardest part, sometimes we don't know our limits until we reach them or try to blindly push through them. This can and does get us into trouble, or can end in tragedy. Thankfully to God and quick action by my wife and then me and our whole family, we didn't have a tragedy - but my daughter learned about her limits the hard way and it could have cost her, her life. I don't think my adrenaline came down until after 2am in the morning that night - as a father, this is the hardest thing I've ever experienced.
But, the lesson you can take is to know and understand your limits and be careful when you push them.
I am all for pushing your limits and reaching new heights, but doing so in a calculated and planned way.
You must learn to know when you are going too far and back off.
We are very lucky and we have a lasting lesson to share with others. I hope you take this to heart and don't learn about your limits the hard way!
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