Friday, December 9, 2011

Perfect Harmony

I've been swimming lately, instead of running, for exercise because I hurt my foot. It has been really great getting back into the "swim" of things and I find that I crave that time in the water now like I used to crave going for a run. 

In a lot of ways swimming is the perfect exercise: it works the whole body, it's easy on the joints, and the world underneath the water is silent and still in a way the world around us rarely, if ever, is. 

But the facts of swimming at a community pool are these: there are a lot of other people who want to swim too and not everybody swims at the same pace. Sometimes these two things mean that my time in the pool is not always harmonious. At least in my head. 

I find myself thinking a lot about where I am and who is behind me or ahead of me. Am I going too fast? Am I going too slow? I tell myself that a wide range of speeds and abilities is just part of the deal at a community pool, but I often find myself worrying about it, wondering if someone is mad at me for how I am swimming or feeling annoyed at someone else for how fast or slow they are going. 

It wasn't like that yesterday. 

It started out worse. I got to the pool late, after lap swimming had already started, and "my" lane (for medium swimmers) was full. Not just full. Crowded. Three people is a full lane. Four or more and it feels pretty crowded. There were already five people in the lane when I got there. I would make six. 

I looked over at the fast lane. Only two swimmers, but they were FAST fast. That wasn't going to work. So I took the plunge. 

I strapped on my goggles, hopped in the medium lane and started swimming. And somehow it just worked. We were in sync. Stoke, stroke, stroke. Turn. Stroke, stroke, stroke. Turn. Not a bump or a pass or a close call in sight. I could feel the harmony with every stroke. 

This tune came into my head from a 70's Coke Commercial, "I want to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony...." and my heart swelled and a smile came to my lips and I thanked the Universe for this moment of perfect harmony in the midst of a lot of strife and stress and anxiety on the planet. 

There is a lot going wrong out there. Don't forget to notice the "perfect harmony" moments in your life.

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