My nose brushed the top of the water. The smell of moldy mud seeped into my nostrils and began to tickle. A warm pulse began to move up and down my spine, my body's way of telling me that I couldn't hold this position forever. I waited.
By this time, my dad and I had perfected this skill. A balance of being patient and knowing when to take a risk. Letting your hand dip quickly into the water, wrapping your fingers around the goal, a tadpole.
My dad and I had made many trips to that smelly pond. The water warm from sitting in the August sun, we would tiptoe into the water, careful not to startle the baby frogs. Using our hands as nets, letting the tadpole rest on our palms before cuddling the tadpole with our fingers. My dad could always catch twice as many, after all his hand was twice as big. But he'd always let them slide through my hands, where I named them, before dropping them into the water with a gentle splash.
Looking back I can see that it wasn't just tadpoles I was learning to catch. I was learning how to catch my dreams: a balance of being patient, and knowing when to take a risk.