Thursday, January 2, 2014

It's Like Riding a Bike...

That is what people say when they mean, something is easy to do and never forgotten...

A lot of people hold dear the first ever two-wheeled bike ride.  It is a small triumph that makes one feel big, grand and free.  The young rider wobbles, feels anxious, heart pounding, nerves rattled.  Then after trial and error, the magic moment comes when he takes off, fully balanced and speeding away on the bike.  

Earlier today, one of my son's snarky little buddies came up to me and exclaimed that he and his brother knew how to ride bikes without training wheels.  They are both older than my son.  This is not an impressive exclamation.  But they are all about impressing me.  So I smiled and a leaned in as though I was telling him a secret,

"Oh yeah, you know what?  Alex doesn't ride on two-wheels, because, you know, he's never been interested in taking off the training wheels.  We asked him once and he said he wasn't interested.  So why don't you go suggest that he take off the training wheels.  I bet he will want to take them off and you can teach him how to ride his bike."

An hour later, Alex came in asking to take off the training wheels.  We said okay, but once they come off, they stay off.  My husband battled with a cruddy bolt for 30 minutes, then a neighbor came along with a better socket wrench than we had (that's what neighbors are for) and removed the old rusted nut.

The boys all ran out into the cul de sac and tried to balance Alex on the bike.  They didn't have a clue.  So Andrew went out, doing his fatherly duty, he balanced him on the bike, and out of nerves, Alex almost immediately flipped the bike.  So we told him to get both feet on the peddles, Andrew balanced him again and walked him three feet then Alex took off riding.  That was it.  He was riding circles around our cul de sac with speed.  I casually reminded him he had brakes.  He tried them out.  Success.  Then he rode happily around the neighborhood with no trouble.  Both my husband and I were impressed, because we both remember more trial than Alex experienced.  

Yay for Alex--independence.  Now sniffles for mommy, because I am sure this will mean he will want to disappear on his bike for half a day on hot summer days.  He has mobility.  He's not tied to me anymore. 

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Mno hiya lita!

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