annanotbob2's Diaryland Diary


Seriously swimming

Today has been hard. Maybe the after effects of the EMDR, maybe just the ebb and flow of life, stuff, all that. Maybe it's just the time of year. I haven't been swimming yet this week, due to having a cough but I'm going in the morning, early. The air temperature will be about 9C which will be the lowest so far. That might cheer me up. 

That was yesterday, Saturday. Today has been better, possibly, probably, because of the swim. As this is new I want to get it all down. Daughter swam all winter 20/21 and looked fantastic on it, in terms of energy and general glowiness. It's taken me till now to even try, possibly because we've had such bad weather in the summers, so windy that the sea was too rough to swim and I hadn't established a habit. But this year I did. I tried to swim every day and managed most days and have just kept going. October was the key month. I've always swum (when it's not too rough), all through September and usually once in October and that's my lot as it suddenly gets cold. But this year I've kept going, all through October and well into November. But to be honest it's been a freaky, climate change, warm as fuck autumn, with quite warm air and the water not too bad at all. I mean, cold, not like summer, but no big deal. 

Since having that incident where I couldn't get out, with the waves dragging me back until people came and got me, I've lost my nerve and have really only gone to the harbour where there are several structures, harbour arms, between the harbour beach and the open sea, which take the power right out of the waves. The tide goes a long way down though and it's very slimy and silty so you need to go at high tide. And this is what I've been doing. Here it is, this morning:lighthousebeach


Luckily it's halfway between my place and where Daughter lives so we meet there. But last week I had a really nasty sore throat which turned into a cough so I left it and hadn't been in since last Sunday till today.

We'd arranged to meet there at 9, high tide being 8.13, too early for my liking, and 9 is fine. I set my alarm for 8, but kept waking up before then, out of weird, vaguely disturbing dreams about swimming which vanished as I reached out to remember them. I wore my swimming costume - well, Sammie's - under my fleecy dress with a pair of fleecy pyjama trousers, my furry slippers and a fake fur coat. I have a brilliant bobble hat, bought from one of the sea-swimming groups. I took a flask of hot sweet chai and a banana. 

When I arrived and got out of the car, it was cold. Proper November cold. I couldn't really imagine getting stripped off, but there was daughter and there were loads of other people, mostly women, some getting in, some in, some recently out of the water and it seemed normal, or possible at least. I take my camping chair to sit on as I struggle to get up off the shingle so I sat in it and stripped off all my outer clothes, being careful to lay them out ready to put back on, at the side, not where I'd be walking. I'd bought a phone bag, which is meant to keep your phone safe and dry, round your neck, while still enabling photos, so that went on, beach shoes on and I headed in to join Daughter already in. Fucking hell. It makes you shriek then it makes you laugh, then swear a bit, then force yourself to bob down and get your shoulders in, more shrieking and then it kind of settles. Bearable, but only just. I couldn't get the fucking phone to respond at all but I could see the time. We stayed in for four minutes by which time my hands were getting cold. Then did a bit of taking photos before getting dressed, which was a mistake, but here's me - I cut D out:

swimming nov20crop

I didn't have enough layers. I piled everything on, and drank some hot tea before heading off home, intending to have a hot shower. Daughter advised against it, as you keep on getting colder for a while and the heat of the shower can make you faint. So I made myself a hot water bottle and popped that down between my fleecy dress and my fake fur coat, but I did have the shivers for quite a while. 

It all changes once the weather gets cold. It's still very good for you but requires knowledge, care, planning, consideration. I did a lot of reading up, all of which I've now forgotten so I'll have to write it all down somewhere. Or get a book. Best to have a book, don't you think? There's also a Japanese thing called a haramaki, which is a band of fabric that warms your core, so I'll be making myself one of those. 

Someone is bringing one of those mobile saunas to the beach on Wednesday - it's going to be there four days a week through the winter and I've booked me and Daughter in for a freeby so that will be our next swim. Exciting times.

12:25 a.m. - 21.11.22


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