Monday, March 24, 2008

Bad Mama

Sometimes I make great parenting decisions. Sometimes my radar and intuition are spot on and I do the right thing, and sometimes I don't.

During Spring Break, we were hoping to give Max some bike-without-the-training-wheels lessons. His school is having a bike rodeo in May and we were hoping he'd have some time to ride and practice before the big rodeo in May. Most of his friends are already off their training wheels and would be participating. The Kid doesn't seem to care one way or the other, but Lefty and I are certain he'll be disappointed in May when all his friends get to do this fun thing and he won't be able to. So we agreed to work on the bike riding thing over the break.

Picture this – a sunny warmish afternoon. We're playing around in the backyard. The Kid is relaxed and having fun. It's the perfect time. I say, "Hey. Let's have a bike lesson." We get the bike and the helmet (of course) and we take one pass across the backyard. I catch the bike before it falls over. We head back the other way and the bike starts to fall. I let it fall. Falling is part of the learning process – how will he ever learn if I don't let him fall?! The Kid hit the ground with a thud and a wail. I try to be cheerful, I say, "Falling is a part of learning. Get back up." The Kid cries harder. He says he's hurt and I said, "You have to try. You'll never learn if you fall once and just give up." He got angry. I got angry. He stormed inside and I put the bike away. Later that day the front of his leg bloomed a big dark bruise. The back of his leg has a long bloody scratch. He really was hurt and I didn't bother to look.

The moral of the story is (as my own Mom was quick to point out) The Kid isn't ready to learn to ride his bike. He doesn't want to and until it's something he really wants, we should just give it a rest - and that's exactly what we are doing.

1 comment:

  1. It happens--the not being the perfect parent all the time. (I think I could actually create a "Bad Mommy" category on my blog--and probably could come up with a new entry daily.) You are a good mom, and the Kid will learn how to ride a bike when he's ready. Don't be hard on yourself!