Friday, October 19, 2007

Anything You Can Do...

I've been trying to take the training wheels off of Kyra's bike for months, and every time I'd broach the subject, it was met with the same panicked response: "BUT WHAT IF I FALL DOWN!!" This would be quickly followed with the whiny excuse, "Well no one else in my class rides their bike without training wheels."

"Wouldn't you like to be the FIRST person in your class to ride without training wheels?" Kyra can be a little competitive and she really really likes to be FIRST, but her fear of bodily harm seemed to override that competitive streak.

"No," she'd whimper. So the training wheels stayed on.

That is until she saw someone younger than her riding without training wheels. We were hanging out at my brother's house last week while back in Illinois and the girls were playing with my nieces, both of whom are roughly Kailey and Kyra's age. They wanted to ride their bikes, so I went outside to supervise and make sure that no one ended up as a hood ornament. As soon as we got outside, Sydney, my youngest niece who recently turned six, weighs about 20 pounds, and is the cutest little thing you'll ever see, scooped up her bike, sans training wheels, hopped on and zoomed down the driveway. I shot Kyra a look.

Not wanting to be outdone by her younger cousin, Kyra marched over to the remaining bike, a tiny purple Disney-Princessy looking thing, picked it up and walked it to the end of the driveway. "Daddy, will you help me?" she asked, piercing me with her bright blue eyes and batting those long thick lashes.


The bike was about a foot tall, so I was done "helping" after roughly three passes. My legs and back screamed out in pain from hunching over the teeny bike and trotting along behind her. But I could tell in that short period of time that Kyra had good balance as long as she kept pedaling. So I took up a position on the driveway and coached her from the sidelines, and ten minutes later, she was zipping along from driveway to driveway. "I'M DOING IT, DADDY!! I'M RIDING A BIKE!!"

I strolled back to the house to get Diane. "Do you want to see your youngest daughter ride a bike?"

"NO WAY!! That didn't take long!"

Kyra spent the rest of the afternoon perfecting her skills, and when we finally got home from our Illinois trip the first thing she wanted me to do was take the training wheels off of her bike. She's been a bike-riding fool ever's all she wants to do. I think she'd sleep with her bike if I'd let her. And now she wants to start riding her bike to school, all of this sparked from a little family rivalry with her younger cousin. I guess we should've headed home months ago.

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