I believe children should be free to take calculated risks. Sure, try that big twisty slide. Jump off the big rock. Climb that tree.
Until it comes to my daughter.
Now that's not entirely true. While I am slightly neurotic about her more daring behavior, I can usually manage a slight "Be careful" and even turn away if need be.
And then came learning to ride a bike. Without training wheels. (Dun-dun-dun!)
I went into it with my same attitude - sure, she'll fall, maybe even get a scrape, but she'll heal. All good, right?
Not a chance.
She was brave. "Let go, Mommy! Let go!" Only I could feel that she wasn't balanced and was certain to fall as soon as I stopped holding her up. Still, my brain was saying, "Do it! Let it go!"
Only my hands wouldn't listen.
I've never had an experience like that before, where I just couldn't bear to pull my hands away. Day 1 of Project: No Training Wheels did not go well, accordingly.
The next day (and with a new bike - thank you, Daddy!) she took it into her own hands. There was no Mommy alongside her having a nervous breakdown. She sat on the bike, walking it, lifting her feet every so often. Then she tried to pedal...and then actually did. And by the end of the day, she had it. She taught herself to ride her bike.
Phew. One milestone down, countless others to go. It's going to be a long haul. Good thing she's worth it!
Emma @ P is for Preschooler