As a kid, my dream had been to be a lifeguard. The lifeguards were so much fun to talk to at the pool They were so pretty, so handsome, and always good for a laugh or too. I was honored when I was hired for my first summer job.
There were lots of older cute boys who worked at the pool with me. There was lots of fun and horse play. I went home every night with a smile on my face. I was sixteen. Life was good.
The little kids decided that they wanted to have a contest to see who could swim under water the longest. They had done this for days. I was always amazed at their stamina.
This contest seemed to be harmless. And then, Anne had been hyperventilating to "build up" her endurance for swimming under water. She dove off the board but passed out by the time she reached the shallow end. When the other lifeguards finally got her out of the pool, she was not breathing. I hope you never see that.
It is a constant nightmare of mine of a little girl who's tongue keeps rolling in the back of her mouth preventing the air flow. I was a wreck. I paced back and forth between talking to 911 and comforting Melanie, Anne's little sister.
I knew the ambulance would not get there in time. How many minutes was it where her brain would need oxygen?
After what seemed to be almost twenty minutes (but must have been one) a man walked into the pool. For some miracle of God, this man was a doctor. He knew just the position to get her head tilted back and the air into her lungs. I don't remember what he looked like and where he went after all was said in done - but if there is such a thing as angels... I had witnessed one that day.
I remember Ann puking and getting up and walking around and at that moment, the ambulance finally made it to the pool.
Anne spent the night in the hospital for observation.
Sometimes, I see Anne at Walmart, a play, or just driving down the street. She's a mom now. I can't help but tear up and think how lucky she is - and how lucky I am that she's alive.