Apr 5, 2010

Teach Me All That I Must Do :)

Do you remember when you learned how to ride a bike? Did you teach yourself? Did you have a brand new bike or an old bike? How old were you? If there were rules for being a mom and one of those rules was, "teach your kids to ride a bike before they are seven" I could never have been a mom. I have no idea why I am so bad at making the bike riding thing happen at this house. But not one of my children has known how to ride a bike before the age of 8. I am not sure what the significance of this is. Maybe it means none of them will be president.

The story begins with Zach, my first born :) We lived in Princeton New Jersey. He was about 6 and I became aware ( as you always do with your first child) that other kids his age were riding bikes. I thought to myself, like there was some massive check off list, "oh my, it must be that time when you teach your kid to ride a bike." So I tried. I really tried. But Zach did not want to fall down. You have to adore falling down to learn to ride a bike. I am not really sure why but he and I just gave up. Don't worry he grew up fine and got a full scholarship to BYU :) But I worried at times that I was going to have a lot of explaining to do when he turned 19 and got a mission call to a location that would require him to ride a bike. But finally when he was 15 he just went out, rode a bike, and that was that. WHEW!

Madeline has no fear and tons of determination so when we lived in Kansas she just decided she was going to ride a bike. So she practiced, practiced and practiced with one foot on the curb and one foot on the street. Once she mastered it, she taught Miriam. That my friends is when I first learned about how useful the sibling thing could be and since then I have cashed in on that knowledge way too many times. It is amazing what I can get them to teach each other for the paltry price of a bag of candy :)

Amanda, is not going to be happy when I confess I don't really know how she learned how to ride a bike. The rumor is that she learned in Indiana and that I personally drove her to the middle school parking lot. But the facts are sketchy. If she was home right now I would ask her, she would take one hour to tell me how it happened and she would be slightly irritated that I did not remember. But i do know that she knows how and surely that counts for something :)

I will never ever forget teaching Joe to ride a bike. It was definitely traumatic.We lived out in the country and had a gravel driveway with a slight hill so I loaded his bike in the car and we went to the church parking lot. It took at least a week of driving to the church parking lot every afternoon. Everytime his bike would not do what he wanted it to he would yell at it and pick it up and throw it. I am sure the old people in the retirement housing next to the church really enjoyed the "joe show." One day I even dropped poor unsuspecting Miriam off at the church parking lot with him. But to my credit I stuck with the incredibly painful proces and Joe can ride a bike.

Tatiana has been wanting to learn how to ride a bike for a year now and all the planets aligned on Saturday, she got Amanda to help her, and within an hour Tatiana was riding a bike. She has the best sense of balance that the Baird family has seen yet. She took one crash into my raspberry bushes but other than that it was a very uneventful process. She went around and around the house about a million times while I worked in the yard.

So there is only one Baird child left that needs to know how to ride a bike and then my work here is done.


Kristy said...

So funny! I love that you remember how each child learned (sorry, Amanda).

Anonymous said...

Don't worry. Sydney is 7 1/2 and has no desire to learn. She has never been a daredevil. I, too, feel like I am somehow failing becuase I'm not really pushing the issue, but oh well....your post made me feel better!

Jenny Jackson said...

I am a failure in the bike teaching realm. I don't have any idea how Andrew learned to ride a bike, I have vague memories of pushing him down the grassy hill in our yard, but not very many times. Aimee learned from her best friend's mom (oh the shame!). Andrew taught Sam. Hannah learned from our neighbor, her best friend. Mindy finally learned last year (at age 9) when she taught herself. Kimberly (age 8) still doesn't know how.