We are sick. All day, in our house, there has been a chorus of coughing and nose blowing. Tissues litter the coffee table, the floor and every other available table top. It started with Jesse last week, moved onto me yesterday and Karis and Silas today. We are just waiting for Matt to fall prey. Needless to say, it has left plenty of time for snuggling under blankets and watching movies.
Even though Karis woke up this morning with a fever, she insisted on going to her first ice skating lesson. I tried to convince her to stay home but she really wanted to go. So, I pumped her full of Motrin and Tylenol, made sure she ate some breakfast and we headed out. When we got there we bundled her up and put on her rental skates, she was so excited. Her instructor had the kids practice falling and getting up out in the lobby and then had them march around on their ice skates. When they did get out on the ice, she had them practice falling and getting up for real.
The parents lined the side of the ice rink, peering through the glass to see how our kids would do. At first, all the kids were falling all over the place and it was super cute. But after a while it started getting really hard for me to watch. Karis would get herself back up, stand for a second or two and then fall down. Get back up, stand, fall. Over and over. As a mom it was just agonizing. I wanted to run out on the ice and hold her up. I hated to see her fall time and time again. She would search for my face on the side of the rink and I would give her a thumbs up and a big smile. I was so proud of her for sticking it out as long as she did, especially for being sick. This was probably not what she envisioned ice skating lessons to be like. I kept telling myself that this is good for her, to learn how to stick at something and to try your best, even though you fall, over and over. And as a mom, to learn how to let her do it.
With about ten minutes left in the lesson she looked up at her instructor and let the tears come. I could tell she was beyond her frustration level, and I didn't blame her. The instructor carried her over to the door and I was there to give her the biggest hug I could muster. I tried to hold back my own tears as I told her how proud I was of her, how she did such a good job of sticking with it. I held her on the side of the rink and we watched, together, through the glass as her class finished up the lesson. I realized, standing there with her that is just the beginning of the process of letting go, of letting her spread her wings, fail and learn. I just pray that I can give what she needs to keep trying. But I do know for certain that she has a faithful hand to hold her up no matter what.
So, we will see what next week brings. I hope she is willing to go again. There is a half hour practice time after the lesson and I think it would probably be a good thing for me to get on the ice myself and help her practice what she learns. The only problem: I don't stand very upright on ice skates myself.
Hmmm, there may be a lesson in this for everyone!
I hope you are enjoying your weekend!