“Swimming Like a Seahorse,” Liahona, June 2020
Robin stared into the swimming pool. He tried not to think about how far he had to swim. All that mattered was earning the badge. The seepferdchen (seahorse) badge would show everybody in Germany that he knew how to swim all by himself.
I can do this! Robin thought. He took a deep breath and jumped.
The cool water felt great on such a hot day.
Take it one meter at a time, Dad had told him. Don’t think about all 25 meters at once.
Robin kept his head down. He moved his arms and legs the way he’d been practicing for months. Every few seconds he pulled up for air.
Kick. Stroke. Kick. Stroke.
Suddenly, the swimming teacher blew her whistle. Robin looked up in surprise.
“Way to go,” his teacher said.
He’d done it!
Robin laughed and did a few underwater somersaults to celebrate. He was a seahorse!
When Robin got home, he hurried to find Dad.
Robin’s dad set down his hammer. As soon as Dad saw the seepferdchen badge, he smiled wide.
“On your first try?” Dad gave Robin a big hug. “What do you want to do to celebrate?”
Robin thought for a second. “What I would really like is to go to the pool with you. I want to show you what I can do.”
Dad smiled even bigger. “Now that would be a celebration for both of us. As soon as I have some time, we’ll go.”
Robin pumped his fist in the air. He couldn’t wait to have the badge sewn on his swimsuit and go swimming with Dad.
Several days passed. Robin kept asking about the pool, but something was always in the way. Dad always seemed to be busy.
One morning Robin knelt by his bed to pray. At the end of the prayer, he added one more thing.
“Please give my dad some extra time so we can go to the pool. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.”
As Robin opened his eyes, he heard Dad knock on the door.
“Let’s head to the pool. I want to see you in action!”
Robin’s jaw dropped. “Dad! You won’t believe this. I just prayed that you would get some extra time so we could go.”
Dad folded his arms and leaned against the doorway. “Now, isn’t that interesting? You see, I just heard a quiet, clear message from the Holy Ghost that I need to take you to the pool. Sounds like we’d better go!”
They had a fantastic trip. Robin showed Dad how he could swim for 25 meters without stopping. Dad was impressed. And Robin was impressed with Dad’s underwater somersaults. Dad could do five in a row!
“I’m glad Heavenly Father gave you some extra time today,” Robin said.
“Actually,” Dad said, “I think I was just letting myself get too busy. I think the Holy Ghost was reminding me that we have to make time for each other, don’t you think? I promise to do my part.”
Robin smiled. “Me too!”
Dad’s eyes crinkled in a smile. “One more thing. Have I ever told you that I’ve never lost a splash fight?”
Robin grinned back. “The day’s not over yet!”