Greetings Friends: It takes a lot of energy to be a chicken. For some reason the thought of doing a 400 yard swim in the Gulf of Mexico at Fort DeSoto, Florida was causing me more anxiety than I can even describe. I did this mock tri last year and asked Clark to take me. I did OK last year. I wore my wet suit. I did not drown. I have been taking a few stroke development classes recently that really helped me. For some reason though my emotions were out of control. I broke down and cried at the Thursday Strider run. Ugh! Even today on the way there I was gasping for air before we even arrived. Show time. Clark reassured me that he would be right there by me. Off we went and I rounded the first buoy. Swim, swim, huffing and puffing . “I want to go in now!” I wailed!! Clark said, OK. As we headed for shore he encouraged me to try to swim like I was at the YMCA. I managed to calm down enough to put my face in the water for a few strokes. More encouragement from Clark and I noticed two other ladies had bailed out of the swim course. It appears there was a little flock of chickens. Clark became a volunteer swim angel. As the three swimmers with Clark’s guidance and encouragement neared the second buoy I decided I could go around it and swim in like the rest of the swimmers. It is an awful feeling to be afraid. It is a awesome feeling to make a little progress in swimming. Thank you, Clark and Marie Grubb and Aaron Jett for cheering me in. Whew!