And putting on his swimsuit.
Two nights in a row of this and on the third, we went to the town pool, stood in line behind two families whose kids were about the height Charlie was when he started swimming seriously and had our photos taken for new ID cards.
'No' Charlie said and then sat in a blue plastic chair for his photo.
We were in the very room where, some nine years ago, Charlie had had swim birthday parties with the kids from his special ed class and their parents, presents and goodie bags and soy ice cream cake and paper hats.
The indoor pool was where Charlie and I passed winter's evening after winter's evening at family swim, sharing a lap lane with other swimmers and a water aerobics class and where I finally overcame excruciating childhood fears of the deep end and learned myself to swim.
There is also an outdoor pool with trees all around on the other side of our town and there Jim and Charlie and I spent many summer weekend afternoons. Charlie learned to swim there with his face in the water and to jump off the diving board. We gutted out the everlasting 15 minutes of adult swim. We tried, unsuccessfully, to keep Charlie from turning his snack bar French fries into ketchup soup.
We had tons of fun. We had some agony, about the fries (as time passed, Charlie started asking for them as soon as we set foot by the pool), and long staring stands at the end if the diving board. We were regulars.
The last time there, Charlie threw fries, flailed and flopped. I dragged him out backwards.
After a three-year hiatus, we got a pool membership again the year before last. When we drove into the parking lot, Charlie said a definitive 'no.'
As we are not at all sure about beach trips anymore due to Charlie's superb swimming ability and the extreme likelihood that once in the ocean, beyond where Jim and I can keep up with him, he will just keep going out to sea -- one has to think of possible rip tides and Charlie not realizing he could be in trouble till it would be too late -- this maybe new phase of swimming in the town swimming pool could turn out to be as fraught with OCD messiness, splashy good hours and material for 'well, it was yet again the best of times and it was the worst of times' sorts of posts.
In other words, the adventure continues.