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But, Won't My Baby Drown?!

Fern LOVES the water.

As in, she loves it so much she screams and cries when it’s time to get out. This kid is like a fish. I had read that babies can start taking swimming lessons around 6 months of age and the thought had crossed my mind to sign her up for them, but then I remembered that they might try to make me dunk my baby under water and I sort of (super) freaked out.

I know everyone does it, but seriously…can’t my baby drown?! I read that little factoid about how babies (unlike adults) can breathe and swallow at the same time – obviously a breastfeeding necessity – so wouldn’t it stand to reason that a baby could breathe water into their lungs and drown then?

Am I over-thinking this?

We went swimming last night with a friend of mine who was a lifeguard for years and taught baby swimming lessons as well and she taught me some techniques for “swimming” with babies and explained the technique used when *dunking babies underwater (*It’s not really so much “dunking” completely like I thought as it is a slight “skimming”, but still…).  My friend watched Fern in the water and commented that she was a natural and that if she was in her baby swimming class that she would have no qualms about trying the “dunking” technique, but said that I shouldn’t do it if I felt uncomfortable with it.

I myself am not a very strong swimmer. I can basically swim to save my life, but that’s about it, and I really would love it if Fern grew up to enjoy swimming and be a better swimmer than me. Maybe I’m just projecting my own fears onto her and she’d be just fine if I let her go under water? Maybe?

Am I the only one who thinks dunking a baby underwater is scary? Have any of you tried it? How did it go?

Maybe I just need to sign up for swimming lessons.

Lauren Hartmann is the founder of The Little Things We Do, a blog about life and adventures in Portland Oregon. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook, or catch up on all of her posts here on Babble.

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