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Ruby Fleetwood

Ruby Fleetwood, the six year old daughter of Fleetwood Mack drummer Mick Fleetwood, was injured critically in a pool accident in which she was doing somersaults in the pool, and apparently swallowed too much water and lost consciousness. Luckily it seems that she is on the mend and could make a full recovery.

Last year my husband bought one of those Dolfino Simple Set pools (14 ft x 37 in). At that time our son had just turned three, and our daughter was four and a half.

One year later the pool is still in its box in our house. My husband shakes his head at me, and some of our friends crack jokes. Both of our kids are in swimming lessons, and our daughter can swim well in water over her head. Maybe as well as Ruby Fleetwood... or maybe not quite. My son can't swim in deep water at all yet, but is making progress in his lessons.

While in their swimming lessons, my kids would never be permitted to do any kind of activity that is beyond their skill level (i.e. somersaults that could disorient them). However a backyard pool creates a scenario where even the most prudent parent or caregiver can become too relaxed and comfortable in their child's ability. Needless to say, our Dolfino pool will stay in its box for at least another couple of years.

A final note for the swim enthusiast parents out there: I have many friends with kids who are wonderful swimmers, including one who has a five year old who dives competitively, all from rec centre lessons and without the aid of a back yard pool. These kids have not suffered at all or been deprived by not having a pool just steps from their back door.


Vered said...

I completely agree that you can become a great swimmer even if you don't have access to a backyard pool.

When my husband and I were looking for a house, we filtered out houses with a swimming pool. I read somewhere that there are far more accidents involving swimming pools than weapons in a house (although we don't own a weapon either).

Jeanne said...

It's too bad, because pools can be an opportunity for exercise for kids, which is so important. Still, all it takes is one mistake, and game over.

My cousin was out with his young daughter by their pool and turned his back for a second, and she slipped into the pool. Luckily he was checking for her literally every 20 seconds or so, so he noticed right away and got her out (she was under 2 yrs old).

He said the thing that scared him was that there was NO sound - not even a splash. Shortly after, they had the pool filled in (they never used it and they knew they wanted more kids).

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