25 yards, at age 10

At 11, 50 yards

Now at age 18 I am going 1650 yards in one race

An average man can go 3 days without water,

Just try to get me to go one day without getting in the water,

On average I am in the water 3-6 hours a day,

Dreaming of that gold medal and those wonderful goggle lines

Competitive swim tan lines are so cute right?

What about those bruises and cuts from somehow diving right onto the lane line

But the best part

the 5 am practice on Fridays and getting up so you can do weights at 6:30 on saturdays instead of sleeping in

Honestly I swim because of the people

I would have given up when I was 8 if I knew it was going to be this hard

Giving up those school events so I could be in the pool down the hall isn’t the dream for high school

In elementary school you dream of those nights were just hang out with friends

Or where you hang out with anyone in the afternoon after school

Instead I hang out with my greatest homies in the pool for hours while our coach understands the commitment we chose

I spend hours looking at a black line 5-14 feet below me that haunts me

I slam my hand in the lane line feeling like my hand broke but I keep going

I chose this, no one forced me into this

I chose this because of that feeling of looking at the clock and dropping half of a second

Or sometimes when your relay qualifies for state

That feeling is the reason I go all year swimming,

giving up my summer and social events

The feeling of when you make the hard set and you feel like you could anything

The feeling when your coach says Good Job

Or that was a good start

Yes the practices are grueling and I feel like I never have enough air

While my coach makes us work on not breathing

Sure, it sucks at times but today,

Today I am going to win

I am not racing the person to my left or right

I am racing my best time

I am racing to beat the clock

I am racing to go to state

Swimming is seen as an individual sport but without my team

I am nothing

That’s why I swim

For the dry hair, the laughter after the main sets, the horrible jokes,

the wonderful singing to High School Musical while we are supposed to be kicking fast

I swim for me

But I swim for them as well

Being on SMNW swim team and Kansas City Blazers and soon Midland University Swim Team brought me more pride and joy than anyone will ever know

Seeing a swimmer in the water it is inspiring and beautiful

Swimming is technique

Swimming is distance

Swimming is sprinting

Swimming is a family where they have seen you when you literally can’t get out of the water because your muscles can’t take it.

Swimming is a family where they saw you get that time that brought you to tears because you made that time

The Pool is my home no matter how much Chlorine is on me

My joy from swimming is something you will never be able to take from me.


This poem is about: 
My community
Poetry Terms Demonstrated: 


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