Anatomy of a Swim Meet

Juliana Miner:

I have three kids, and they all swim on a swim team every summer. I decided to capture my experience at a morning swim meet, for those of you not in the water cult.

6:00 a.m.: Wake up, drink coffee. Wake up grouchy children.

6:45 a.m.: Arrive at pool. Parking lot is already full. Let the kids out and park far away. Carry/drag chairs, bags and a cooler as if I were large pack animal. It occurs to me suddenly that as mother of three there is no denying that I am a large pack animal.

6:58 a.m.: Small miracle occurs. I find a great place to set up chairs, etc. Next to friends. With a good view of the pool. In full shade. Wish I’d brought a sweatshirt actually, it’s kind of chilly.

7:00 a.m.: Kids jump into the freezing cold pool for warm-ups and exchange looks with each other like — WHY DO WE DO THIS AGAIN?

7:30 a.m.: Children begin harassing me for money for the snack bar. I try to hand them something healthy from the cooler. Suddenly every other kid at the swim meet is eating large, chocolate-frosted doughnuts.