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I never enjoyed swimming lessons. You’re cold. You’re practically naked. You’re being graded. And, in my day, we had to practice mouth-to-mouth resuscitation on an actual human! Add to this the problem I had every time I first jumped into the water. I don’t know why it happened, but I always had to pee. I couldn’t continually ask my teacher if I could go to the bathroom at the start of each class. He would just tell me to go before the lesson started. But that was my problem. I never had to go before. It always came upon me as soon as I jumped in the pool. I also can’t pee under pressure and so, if I was expected to go before, everything would just freeze up. To this day I cannot pee into a urinal if there is someone waiting behind me. If I’m caught in that situation I just wait and then zip up my pants and pretend to have gone. Usually I just look for a private stall in order to avoid this.     

I didn’t want to ask my teacher every time. I didn’t need to go before class. And I couldn’t get through class with the pressure in my bladder. That left only one solution. I peed in the pool. Not just once, but pretty much at the start of every swimming lesson. I apologize to those who swam with me.

Since this chapter is on “pee” I’m reminded of another incident that happened a few years later. It was at summer camp and my counselor was sitting at the end of the table telling jokes. Like everyone else my sides were hurting from laughter. Then it happened! I couldn’t hold it any longer and once it started I just let it all come out. I’d peed in my pants and I was eleven years old! The relief felt good, but how was I going to get out of this without anyone discovering what I did? We were sitting at a long picnic type table, but as soon as lunch was over I was going to have to stand up. That’s when I had an idea. The way dishes were done at this camp was to have two bus pans brought to each table. One was full of soapy water for washing and the other with clear water for rinsing. I volunteer to do the dishes and when the bus pans came over to our table I made sure they were right in front of me. When I stood up I grabbed the side of one of the bus pans and pretended to push myself out of my seated position. As I did this I ended up overturning the pan and spilling the water all over me. Everyone laughed at how “clumsy” I was, but that was better than them knowing I peed my pants. Since I was soaking wet my counsellor told me to go to back to our cabin and change, so I also got out of doing the dishes!!! It was brilliant.

If someone needs a life lesson from these stories here is what I’ve learned: You shouldn’t pee in swimming pools. But if I was at a friend’s house today and I laughed so hard that I peed in my pants again, I would still spill something on myself to conceal the damage!