Photo Credit: Christopher Chung / The Press Democrat
Alex Cox, center, practices with the Oak Park Aqua-Stars synchronized swimming team Oak Park Swim & Racquet Club on Wednesday, June 10, 2009.)
Sometimes we just got to say it out loud; I am soooo proud of my niece Nicole. Why, because she has taught herself self discipline in her swimming. Now really I would need to describe what she does as dance in the water. Nicole is headed off to the Esynchro Age Group Nationals for Synchronized swimming this weekend. She is only 16 years old and swims with the 15 – 18 year old team. She was not always on “The Team”, of her swim club; in fact I remember her stating her goal to get there and then enacting a plan. It was and still is a plan of dedication and vision for herself. That is amazing to me, how a young teenager, (remember this started when she was much younger), has a vision for her life, in the now. That idea seems opposite to what we are “told” to believe as parents when our kids hit the teenage years. Actually I am not sure where I got that “told” stuff, but I am glad it is not always true. I am sure Nicole has made some crazy choices along the way, but she is not telling me about those. We all make the crazy choices; the hope is that they do not interfere with the vision set before us.
Now it is true she is not an adult yet, still needs a little guidance in her life from her parents, and a little more from her Aunties (like me) Ok, Ok, I will leave it to adults she admires. I think she even knows how to glean direction from the adults that do not make the best impressions in a life, or who are hard and demanding. She is learning the secret of a wonderful life; discovering the gems of wisdom even in the midst of adversity. She is grown up, and yet ever growing into the vision set before her. Remember, it is her vision; however it still falls within the influence of those who surround her.
I do not think her parents envisioned their daughter at 8 years old swimming in the Esynchro Age Group Nationals, however they do see Nicole. They see she is growing, embracing life around her, stretching her boundaries and challenging herself. They do see her walking in her strengths and pushing through her weaknesses so these very weaknesses’ become her strengths. They allow her to make the choice between ballet and swimming, so she learns the lesson of focus. In some ways we can’t have “it” all, but in the end it does seem like we do.
Nicole, I enjoy your life, I enjoy watching you swim, and watching you play. I love the influence you are to little Margo, hey, you got her to brush her teeth, “to keep Mr. Cavity away”. I think it is so very cool that you watch the cooking shows and then create your own recipes and make awesome cookies. I love that you drive a red mustang, yet don’t have the airs that could go along with it. All of this to say, you are going far in your life, in more ways than one. Keep your vision big, your focus narrow and changing as needed. Have a great swim this next week in the nationals. Just Dance!!!
Here is a link to a wonderful example of their upcoming routine for the Esynchro Age Group Nationals: www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20090622/ARTICLES/906229894 Be sure to click on the video of their routine which is part of the article.
Swim on Nicole, swim on!!!! Oh yes, here is lots of love and kisses too. XXXXXXXxxxxxxxx (the lower case is from Margo)
PS: The photo was provided from the Press Democrat, a local Santa Rosa California paper