OK, so ‘danger zone’ is probably a stretch, and ‘comfort zone’ is more like it – but when you don your sensible togs and swim in front of 200 people, the lines between danger and comfort might blur for you too!
But that’s exactly what I did. It took me three years of school swimming sports but I finally plucked up the courage, threw on a one-piece swimming costume and swam in the Parent-Son race.
In an event dominated by dads, I’m happy to report my togs stayed up (there are plenty of reasons why your son should leave a legacy at his school and a topless mother isn’t one of them), my dive was clean (I didn’t bellyflop), and my son won by a whisker (he says he waited for me).
But the best thing about moving off the bleachers and into the pool was the look on my 12-year old’s face – happiness, excitement and maybe just a teeny tiny bit of pride in his mum for braving up. Yes, I was out of my comfort zone, but I certainly wasn’t in the danger zone, and this is a memory Will and I created together and we’ll have forever.
Maybe my danger zone is really about my parenting and the need to remember to walk the role model walk if I want my kids to be the brave, bold and confident young people I hope they’ll always be.