I Guess I can Still Teach Him How to Throw a Spiral

Writers block is a bitch. The words are there in my brain, but swirling around and I struggle to articulate them and put them together in a meaningful way.  It’s like having a new LEGO set without instructions. Several times I sat down to try to craft the sentences and paragraphs but ultimately the only result is frustration. And now nearly an entire summer has passed and I feel as if I missed recording so many moments as so much has happened. We spent 10 days in Colorado on vacation, Benjamin turned 7, Matthew started kindergarten, both left the daycare/preschool perhaps for the last time, my parents celebrated their 50th Anniversary and we added a new member to our family in Digger. Hopefully, I can get to all that in the coming weeks, but first…

Two weeks ago, Benjamin realized that one of the neighbor kids, who is younger than him, could ride a bike without training wheels.  In the past, I have had barely any luck teaching Ben how to ride WITH training wheels.  I had it as a goal for the summer, but the summer slipped by in a blur.  So, Benjamin started riding his bike any chance he could, going from hardly being able to pedal and steer at the same time, to whipping around the neighborhood as we took Digger for a walk.

So, the time came for removing the training wheels, and I promised we would do it sometime this weekend.  Today quickly filled up with planning for fall projects, to shopping for fall projects to beginning fall projects and before I knew it, it was 4:30 and Ben was pleading for the training wheels to come off.  I told him when I finished stacking wood.  So, he went off to play with his friends with his bike and training wheels.

About an hour later, he came back, beaming from ear to ear, telling Andrea and I how he rode his friends bike with no training wheels.  I was so conflicted.  I was so proud of him and I told him so, giving him a high-five and a hug.  However, at the same time, I was absolutely crushed.  I was suppose to be the one who taught him how to do that.  I was suppose to be the one running along-side of his bike cheering him on.  I was suppose to be the one that first saw him speed away on a bike, especially with how important cycling is to me.

However, no, I was the one doing a chore that could have waited a few hours while he sped off on his own with his friends cheering him on.

But, I am so proud of him.  He got it stuck in his head that this is what he wanted to do and he did it.  He practiced and he listened to things I told him about being steady on the bike, even with the training wheels. Every chance he got, he was out doing loops in the driveway.  And today, all of his own, he took off on two wheels.  And I love so much that aspect of the story and I am so proud of the way he went about it.

It’s been a long time since I have had such conflicting emotions.  It is another reminder of how precious these days are with the kids at this age.  It’s another reminder that I need to sometimes just put the tools down and spend some more time with the boys.

Later this evening, he told me that he’d like to know more about football as I was watching the Notre Dame/Michigan game…I have some hope!

Categories: Growing Up, Observations

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