Temperatures are soaring outside, and that means that most folks will spend more time outside. Along with the fun in the some comes a lot of water activities. I want to urge you all to be very careful. I hope a life or two or more can be saved from our tragedy.
It's unfortunate that there will be drowning tragedies. We were one of those statistics last summer, but you don't have to be a statistic. Ethan was well supervised, I just want to emphasize that to, in a way, scare you into being extra, extra careful. There were many adults around the pool, and Ethan was being supervised. Let me say that again...he was supervised, and yet he still drowned.
After losing Ethan, I searched the internet for other moms who had lost children to drowning. While the vast majority of children lost in this manner are toddlers who got out of their parent's/guardian's line of vision (and we as parents know how hard and impossible it is to have our eyes on them every single moment of every day) and fell into a pool, I have found a few instances where children who were trained to swim AND were swimming with adult supervision, still drowned.
The very best advice I can give is that we must not have one single distraction when children are in the pool. At least one adult must be the lifeguard, meaning that this designated person is constantly watching and NOT engaging in a conversation or any other distraction. Nothing. Only watching. Period. Here's why: drowning isn't what it looks like in movies and TV shows. It's a silent killer.
Also, do not be mislead into thinking that since your child has had a few swimming lessons, that they are okay to swim alone or with less supervision. One summer's worth of lessons is not sufficient. Learning to swim is an ongoing process.
Another very scary thing that I have heard of is children who have nearly drowned at swimming lessons, with the instructor close by. DO NOT leave the area. Stay and supervise at ALL times! Do not engage in conversation. Be watchful at all times. One instructor with 4 children isn't sufficient supervision, even if the swim school assures you it is...be safe and stay!
And lastly, and most importantly, if you own a pool, please consider putting up one or more barriers to prevent a child falling in. Also, if you intend on having guests over to swim, you MUST set up rules for your pool, and you must be diligent!
I would never want anyone to go through what we have been through. It changes you down to the very core of your soul. Though I know that the Lord has been glorified throughout the past year, and many have turned to Christ because of Ethan's testimony...I do not want this to happen to YOU!
PLEASE EXERCISE CAUTION AND DO NOT HAVE THE ATTITUDE "THIS COULD NEVER HAPPEN TO ME!"
God bless you all.