Dear Ian,

There is always a point in time where you decided

to take charge and decide for yourself. That defining moment came to me when we visited Sentosa Adventure Cove (http://www.rwsentosa.com/language/en-US/Homepage/ThingsToDo/MarineLifePark/AdventureCoveWaterpark) last weekend.

It was one of those water theme parks, we have all been to Wild Wild Wet(http://www.wildwildwet.com/), you’ve been to the water slides and the river-like float.

These are the things we did and my proudest moment was when we went to the Rainbow Reef, it’s a large fish tank where the simulate a snorkeling environment.

I have never snorkel, ever. All I can relate to is pictures of people snorkeling, and I didn’t know the reality of it. First thing that hit me, and you I’m sure was how cold the water was. While we played at the wave pool and the River, the water was warm, well at least warmer than that of the Rainbow Reef. The next thing that hit me, was the unfamiliar equipment, I didn’t know that a snorkel mask covers the nose, cView from underwater completely. Now that I’ve worn one, I can understand the logic, since you are breathing through a tube, with your mouth, it made sense to shut out the nose.

I didn’t now that. And I didn’t know how to prepare you for it as well. Oh, didn’t I mention the tank was 2.9 metres deep?

It was difficult for you, I can tell, firstly, you are not that great a swimmer, yet. and the mask was giving you a problem, I’d wanted to play it safe and count your effort to try was commendable, but you decided to hang on, also against the better judgement of the Chinese life guard.Ian surfacing

He thought you didn’t dare as well, and for safety sake, I would agree with him. You don’t even date to straighten out your legs. when we move off the ledge. Twice I have to pull you back to the ledge and adjust the mask for you. You didn’t seem to understand the concept of the snorkel, and you have to breath through that.

Ian in his first time snorkeling

I wanted to call it quits. But you said to try one more time.

This time, with the lifeguard’s suggestion, I lay you face down, leg straightened and let the buoyancy of the life vest float you. Once you look comfortable face down, breathing through the snorkel, I took you off the ledge!

If there is any highlights this year of being a dad, this would count as one of them, because there I was, your dad, the only person you can count on, in the pool, holding me while you simply enjoyed yourself with the experience. Nothing could replace that feeling, where you know your son is holding onto you, in his own innocent world, enjoying the fishes, trying to talk through his snorkel, while the dad, does the propulsion. It is a feeling of certain measurement of trust, between a father and his son.

the base of the 2.9m pool

Your mum is just as proud of you as I did, and really, that was the defining moment, where you made a big step out of the little Ian and into a slightly larger, more responsible Ian. There was a certain level of confidence you had, when you said to try it again. I can tell you are not forcing it, there was not uncertainty, you knew you could do this and you did, and I’m glad you did.

First published in May 21, 2013

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