Polar Bear Plunge : An event held during the winter where participants enter a body of water despite the low temperature.
My brother arrived from Idaho and after working on the house a few days, I could start to see him eying the pool. I quickly shot him down and informed him, although the weather is beautiful, the pool is frigid. At night we drop into the low 40s which means that pool is chilly. Yet, he longingly looked at the pool. Towards the end of his time with us, he started talking to Hallie about how fun it would be to jump in – the polar bear plunge. He really talked it up and I could see Hallie’s eyes start to light up at the idea of it.
I didn’t think to squash the idea so early because I thought it would fizzle quickly.
But it didn’t die.
So the night arrived (51 F – which means the water was even colder!) and Cameron and Hallie were all talk about the pool. I knew Cameron would do it, but I was going to do my best to discourage Hallie. She insisted she get her swim suit on. She insisted on the towel. So I went through the motions with her, wondering at what point do I put my “parent hat” on and tell her the idea is crazy and there is absolutely no way she would be participating. I guess a part of me wanted to let her make that decision and then let her see the consequences to that decision. I kept reminding her how cold it was going to be. As she neared the pool and we told her to put her feet in so she can see how cold it was.
After doing so she started to complain at how much it hurt. I thought we had sealed the deal and there would be no way she would jump in.
She still insisted, yet she hesitated each time they were to jump in. We made sure she realized – there would be absolutely no crying. With that knowledge – Cameron scooped her up in his arms and they jumped.
When she surfaced there were tears welling in her eyes. We got her out and to her credit, those tears never fell. She kept telling me the water was so cold it hurt.
She got inside and started to thaw and she was all smiles. There was a sense of pride that washed over her and she was half tempted to jump again! She knew at that point she was in the “club” that Cameron had talked about all week, “The Polar Bear” club. Unfortunately, I don’t think she realizes there’s no benefits to such a club!