I have always loved being in the water: pool, ocean, bathtub... love them all! My mother has been aquacizing for many years now, and when Y-workouts and Curves became too strenuous for me, she invited me to go to her water exercise class. Although I didn't visit hers, I did find one of my own...
Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, a group of amazing women meet in the pool (at our local YMCA) to exercise their bodies and socialize their minds. Most of them suffer from Fibromyalgia and/or other chronic pains. Did you know that if you are up to your neck in water, the gravity-force on your body is reduced by 95%? I feel wonderful in the water! Even on the most painful days, being in the water feels better than being on land!
I was fortunate to meet with some water-physical-therapists in the therapy pool at Duke. (Actually, at Lennox-Baker Children's Hospital. They have a heated pool, 95°, with rails and a ramp, really perfect for people with pain. They gave me individualized moves, and I confirmed what we do in our class. All was approved, with caveats for my personal needs (no jumping/jogging, no twisting, etc). I felt much more comfortable that "professionals" had approved this class, and recommended it for me.
I have been going to the pool regularly since last February. I find, now, that if I miss even one class, I feel worse. When I can go very consistently, I feel better. And, the ladies understand when I just can't get out of bed to get to the pool. Or, if I can just make it to the pool, but can only float and bob around. And, I understand the same for them.
I have laughed more in the pool in the last year than any where else. We have "joke time" where we tell each other actualy jokes; we have standard jokes (auditioning for the rockets; or if figure-8's are too hard, you can try 1's and 7's; racing cycles to the wall); and we laugh over whatever new thing has happened (we have one precious friend who just endured a 3-day colonoscopy, and she can laugh about it!).
Ladies, I told you that I would write about you. Thank you for welcoming me as one of your own, for allowing me to groan and moan or to laugh and joke, just as I need. Thank you for letting me teach the "newbies" (you know that I love to do it). Thank you for reminding me that I can laugh, even in the midst of trouble. Thank you for your wisdom that hasn't been "put out to pasture."