On the first day, because physical fitness was not my strength, my self-confidence was weak at that point. There were twenty teenagers in my class; each one of them looked exceedingly robust and confident. I felt a little nervous and inferior at that point. Our instructor has a sense of humour, but he is pretty strict on giving us marks as a professional. His humour helped me relax in the beginning, but later I became much more stressed when he suddenly changed his attitude while evaluating us. We started on the land to learn the theory and course introduction first. In the afternoon, he did the evaluations on our dives and strokes. All of my strokes had big problems on that day, and above all, side stroke is the most dysfunctional one of mine. What’s even worse, I lost my glasses on that day. Life has taught me a lesson in a tough way that I need to pay more attention to what I am doing. I felt grieved. Why would anyone want to take a pair of glasses with my prescription？Undergoing a suffering day, not only physically but also mentally, I had to complete a lot of paperwork as homework for the course until midnight.
On next day, we were in the water all day, except for lunch. We started to help out the younger kids classes, which was entertaining. My favourite class was the preschool group. The only thing we did was playing around with them, and we were in the warmer pool while teaching. Unexpectedly, one of the kids made my day like a beam of sunshine. The cute girl refused to go home after class. “I will miss you,” she said, embracing my waist with both her arms. “Am I going to see you again?” Her sweet voice touched my heart like a gentle breeze. However, harsh training still comes according to the schedule. When we didn’t have classes, we could help out each other, working on the strokes. Our instructor assigned our groups, so I had two partners. They were tolerant at first but started to ignore me when they realized that I was weaker on my skills. I was humiliated by their reaction, but I refrained and kept on improving myself.
On the last day, we repeated the same task as on the second day, but in the afternoon, there was a girl who felt sick and went home. As a result, her partner must find another person to match with. The instructor asked our group to choose a person as his partner. One of my partners volunteered, but after she realized that she would be partnered with a boy, she retreated. Out of expectation, she told the instructor that I could be that boy’s partner, even without asking me. Even though changing partner was not my decision and obviously she bullied me, the outcome turned out not bad. Every cloud has its silver lining. My new partner was a warm-hearted guy, and his afternoon schedule was shorter than that of my previous group, so I got more time to practise my strokes. After my partner passed his strokes, he still continuously helped me with my strokes with great patience. He corrected most of the mistakes that I made. I felt such a relief when my instructor said that I improved a lot. Because my strokes were not passed at all on the first day, and all passed on the last day. I was very grateful how helpful my new partner was.
These three days were one of the most exhausting periods in my life. I was proud that I survived. From the experiences in this course, I learned three lessons. First, pay more attention to and care more about the surroundings all the time. Second, improving myself is the only way to earn others’ respect. Third, the harder I work, the luckier I will be.