We have a little routine going now on a Friday evening so we can have some time in the swimming pool with Alexandra. Even before she was born we bought cossies for her and decided we wanted to take her swimming, although eventually she was about 18 weeks old before we did.
We go to our local pool which has a session between 6.15 and 7.15 every evening for all ages, that may seem late to some but usually she’s had all her bottles for the day before we go so then when we get home she’s straight to bed, she always sleeps great afterwards so it’s not disrupting her routine as far as we can see.
As Dylan’s at work until gone five I prepare the swimming bag and then get Alex into her swimming cossie and swim nappy before wrapping her up warm and getting her into the car seat ready for him coming home. Once we get there we lay her down on the bench (obviously standing next to her at all times!) and get ourselves ready (I’ve always got my swimming stuff on under my clothes to make this process a bit quicker) before changing her at the last second.
We go into the pool for 20 minutes – as recommended by NHS guidelines to make sure she doesn’t get cold. She really enjoys bobbing along and watching the other people in there, as well as kicking her legs when she goes onto her front! From an early age she’s been in the shower and had water gently splashed on her face in the bath so she’s not scared of the water at all. I’d hate to have a child who didn’t want to get splashed!
After 20 minutes we go to the showers and I always skip washing my hair so I can go and empty the locker and get everything ready for her while Dylan gives her a shower. I then take her and wrap her in her big hooded towel to get dry and warm. Then it’s a quick change into a normal nappy and her babygrow so she doesn’t have to be changed again for bed when we get home. She’s then wrapped in her outside clothes to keep warm while we both get dressed again then we’re ready to go!
This little routine is working well for us although it will be even better when she can spend longer in the pool and one or both of us can get some proper swimming done in the lanes while the other looks after Alexandra for a bit!
Harriet and Alexandra X