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Swimming a La France

Helen Holyoake-Ward

Even although it was four o'clock in the afternoon, the sun shone high in the periwinkle blue sky. Sounds rippled gently like the water from the diamond pool lapping at my toes, and it was the first time that I had ever experienced total peace of mind and tranquility.

Distant voices of children gently disturbed my thoughts, but it was too late, I had changed. It was as if I had been put in that place for this reason and time could not be reversed. How was I going to explain when previously, I had never had a voice?

Calmed by the heat and velvet touch of water I knew I would never go back to the past life, which seemed so very distant now. Nakedness had never been something that I was comfortable with, but I was naked now and the sun had warmed my soul to the vivid pleasure of the moment.

At last escape from the encompassing self-imposed barrier of prison walls was within my grasp and I was prepared to plunge. After a lifetime of wondering it was now time to fulfill dreams, because up to now I had only had cause to dream, whilst closeted in the embrace of motherhood and partnership.

Voices drew closer and this moment was fading, but the contentment had left its kind endearment within my soul and I could become what I wanted to be. I was no longer to dance to anyone else's tune. I would sing my own sweet song of freedom.

I was tired of living as one and wanting to be the other. This time I would be who I wanted to be. It didn't matter any more because I was no longer afraid, I was no longer afraid to make mistakes or to be wrong. If I could now be true to myself I could become complete. This adventure was to be forever and it was beginning now.

The distant valley sounds grew nearer still; before too long they will have arrived and the moment would be gone and never return. So as I lowered my warmed and tanned body into the cool caressing crystal depths the experience was truly mine to cherish.

The walk was over, the wanderers returned and they would never know the moment I had been reborn but I would keep that sweet memory safe in my heart along with my dreams.

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