Monday, May 04, 2009
Follow The Leader
While we were in the states (Christmas - Feb. 24th), our sweet and generous little cousin, Eli, offered for Grady to use his small bike. Grady did really well on it even though it didn't have any training wheels. He'd never ridden a bike without training wheels before.
When we got back to Brazil, esp. after seeing all his other little friends riding all the time without training wheels, Grady wanted his training wheels off. Never mind the fact that all of his other friends' bikes are REALLY small compared to Grady's bike. And, the bike Grady rode in the states is also much smaller. (Bikes are really expensive here...we chose to get bikes the kids could grow into and use for a very long time instead of buying more than one bike)
Joel took one of his training wheels off at first. He did pretty well with that. Eventually the other wheel came off and he had a hard time. He would get too frustrated to really work on it, so the training wheel got put back on so he could still ride with his friends.
But then Grady noticed that some of his friends had kickstands on their bikes. He wanted one. As long as there were training wheels on his bike, there was no need for a kickstand. Joel told him that when he was no longer using training wheels, he could get a kickstand.
That was all it took. Within a couple of days, Grady was zooming all around this place with no training wheels. And that Saturday he woke up early telling Joel they had to go get his kickstand. :) Who knew?
A few days after success was achieved on the bike, Joel and Grady went bike-riding together. Joel told me about it when he got back.
"I realized a long-time dream today...riding bikes with my kid. We rode along for a long time, him following after me. Then he saw some of his friends riding bikes, and off he went."
At that moment, it was as if God gave me that picture.
Isn't that what we do in parenting? We play follow the leader for a few years and then off they go.
What a really neat realization and practical picture it was for me...some bike-riding life lessons. :) I must remember to "ride my bike well" in front of my children so they don't crash themselves.
And now...Grady in action (he and his best little friend, our neighbor, Luis Felipe). He rides his bike ALL the time.