Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Step and The Swim

This past week at family camp, Sonya and I had to deal with some fears.  In the beginning of the week the camp directer went through the list of activities that were available to do at camp.  One of the available activities was something called Hi-O Falls.  Hi-O Falls is a paratrooper training device.  You get harnessed into a rope and you have to step off the edge of a 40 foot platform, not run or jump because you will barrel down to the ground if you do, just calmly step off.  
It basically defies all logic in your brain, at least in my brain.
In the beginning of the week I said there is no way I would do that, and I put it out of my head.  
My little Sonya C. had a little bit of a hard time in the pool this week.  She took swim lessons all winter, so I thought swimming at the pool this summer would be cake.  I thought wrong.  She does fine in the baby pool but was utterly petrified in the big pool.  The first night we were at the pool we put her in her puddle jumper,  and let her go in the big pool.  She screamed bloody murder and pretty much panicked in the water.  For rest of the week she would not go into water deeper than 18 inches.  Let me just say the girl swims like a fish in shallow water paddling her arms and kicking like a mermaid.
Here she is checking out the big pool.
On day seven at camp after we listened to the speaker for the day people were sharing what they had learned during the week. Our speaker Miles's wife Bonnie shared about taking the step off Hi-O Falls.  She said when she did it, it was a physical way to take a leap of faith.  You had to trust in the harness with your life and the promise that it would keep you safe.  Just like our relationship with the Lord, I have to trust him with my life and believe that he will keep me safe.  I decided I needed to step off the platform, and got really excited about doing it.  I had wait all afternoon to do it because Josh was doing something else, and I wanted him to watch me.  
While I waited for Josh Sonya and I went swimming in the lazy river.  I even tried  to bribe her to swim by herself.  I told her she could get a special treat from the snack bar, pick out anything from the camp store, or get a new princess Barbie when we got home.  She still would not swim.   All week she would just play on the steps of the pool, not letting us take her around in a tube or in her puddle jumper.  I could tell her confidence was growing and she was wanting to go around the lazy river, so I put her in a tube, against her will, and took her around the lazy river.  She was scared at first, but then she really loved it.  The next time around she walked with the tube around her head, she was so close to swimming by herself.   When we rounded the corner of the lazy river on our third pass, I told her I was going to jump off the tower today.  I told her I was scared but I needed to do it.  All of the sudden she looked at me and threw the tube off her body and started swimming all by herself in the lazy river.  
No tube, no puddle jumper, no hands, and NO FEAR!!!  
I almost started crying, my girl did it, she made the decision to not live in fear.  
She knew she was safe. 
 She was literally squealing with delight. 
 We could not pull her out of the water the rest of the day.  
When Josh made it up to the pool with Teddy, he couldn't believe that she was swimming all by herself. Then I knew it was my turn, so I  put on my clothes and close toed shoes.  One of the staffers Will put me in my harness and I made my way up the tower.  I was well aware of the height of the tower because it also where you got on the tallest water slide.  When I reached the top, I was terrified.  My heart was beating out of my chest, I could barely catch my breath. I kept telling this cute college boy that I couldn't do it.  He kept reassuring me I could do it, and that all I had to do was take a step.  I started getting really mad because I knew I had to do it, there was no way out.  Since we were at a Christian camp, I couldn't let all of the foul words come out of my that were on the tip of my tongue.  I had to do it for Sonya and for my relationship with Christ.  
I called down to Josh and said I couldn't do it, he told me I could do it.
I waited for my family to round the corner in the lazy river so they could watch me step.    
Finally I was ready to walk off the tower.  
I
 closed my eyes, 
held my breath, 
and 
stepped.  
  Honestly, I was still scared when I hit the ground, but so glad I did it.  As I was walking out of the landing zone, and Will said, "You know you can go again.  There is no one waiting."  My first response was  NO WAY, but then I made my way back up the tower to prove to myself I could do it again, that I wasn't a fluke. 
I stepped again.
Hit the ground, and felt empowered.
Again, there was no one waiting.
So I stepped a third and final time.
This time it was encourage another mom to take the step.
My short journey with Hi-O Falls is a true reflection of my relationship with the Lord.
Jump One:
I have to have faith in God's promises.  
Jump Two:
 I have to keep trusting him through trials and blessings. 
Jump Three:
 Our faith encourages others. 
(these photos are not me)
While I was stepping off the tower a couple more times.  
Sonya pushed herself a bit further and decided to jump in the pool with no one to catch her.  
The girl went from 0 to 60 in one day.
Sonya reminded me that she could pick out a treat for being so brave.  
Here is what she picked  out.
I got off pretty cheap.
A very good day for the Lang girls.

5 comments:

Cary June 25, 2011 at 9:53 PM  

Love it. I love all of it.

Lauren June 28, 2011 at 1:23 PM  

Hey Missy, "long time reader, first time commenter", love this post. Every little thing about it. Thanks for sharing your life!

Ashley C. Teer June 30, 2011 at 12:41 AM  

you go, grilism. you and So-so...just astounding. and that you went to Kamp...abby is here and she is dying! she was on staff their last year! in charge of the dining hall staff! amazing memories you must have made...

abbs89 June 30, 2011 at 2:49 AM  

dear missy,

hi! i love that you went to k-kauai! did you know i worked there? how did you get there? i love that place so much. it blesses my heart to see pictures and read your blog about it. and i also know the speakers you heard...miles and bonnie paludan? totally went to their church when i lived in okc last year. the world is shrinking as i type :)

officially yours,
37th follower,
abby smith.

Sara D. June 30, 2011 at 5:10 PM  

Coolest thing I've read in a long time!! So do you freefall, or does the harness catch you right away and bring you gracefully to the ground? Curious.

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