It was 9:00 a.m. Sunday morning and after I yelled at my children for the 100th time I determined that I needed to sweat and that we all needed to get out of the house. It was two days since my last workout and I needed it. If I go more than two days without breaking a sweat I get cranky, I yell at my kids more (if that is humanely possible),and my eating literally goes straight down the unhealthy spiral to hell faster than the Road Runner escaping from Wile E Coyote.
I told the kids to get dressed that we were going on a bike ride. We were all excited! I figured we’d ride on the Greenbelt for a few miles, I’d jog beside them and after that we’d go to their favorite bagel place. Win! Win! I knew it would be a light jog but as long as I sweated I didn’t care, any activity at this point was what I needed.
I loaded the kids in the car got their bikes and helmets packed away, and strapped my seat belt on. I was happy and ready to go. Just as I was pulling away the littlest bugger Matthew started screaming that he didn’t want his bike that he wanted his scooter ‘cause he could go faster. Okay, I get that, I have a need for speed too. I diligently pulled back into the driveway, took the bike out of the car, got his scooter and off we went. We were all happy. So happy!
We arrived at the Greenbelt trail no less than a mile from our home. We hopped out; got their helmets on and as soon as we took our first step towards the trail is when the littlest bugger started to scream as if Freddy Kruger was chasing him. As loud as he could he screamed over and over AND over again: “I want my bike, I want my bike,I want my bike, I don’t want to go on the trail I don’t want to go on the trail,I DON’T WANT TO GO ON TRAIL” like a broken record. ARE YOU EFFFFFIIING kidding me is all I could think, I should have kept that fricking bike in the car. I tried to reason with him like I was negotiating the Iran-Hostage crisis, repeating that he chose the scooter over the bike but nothing was working, NOTHING. Not bribes of watching an extra ten minutes of TV, or a trip to the pool or even the almighty Ice Cream Truck. NOTHING.
I had an enough. Bike ride. FAIL.
My blood pressure was through the roof, I was sweating as if I just ran 13 miles. I was seeing stars. I yelled at the boys to get in the car and get in NOW. All Richie, the seven year old little bugger wanted to do was ride, ride like the wind. But he couldn’t. As I drove home, I told Matthew that he was staying with Dad that he couldn’t scream and cry to get what he wanted. There would be no treat of a bike ride, the bagel store, or basically anything until I got home. I also told him that Richie and I were coming back we were going to ride our bikes, come hell or high water I was going to legitimately sweat.
The WAILING continued. I put on my ear muffs, got home, dropped the screaming kid off, loaded my bike into the car and off Richie and I went going to SWEAT.
I thought to myself how maturely Richie was handling this, he didn’t say a word. No snotty remarks, no screaming that Matthew ruins everything, no nothing. That’s my boy.
Back on the Greenbelt, Richie and I rode like we were in the Tour De France; we were enjoying the bike ride immensely. Richie loved the nature, he loved hearing the birds, the squirrels, he was telling me all about the trees and how they provide oxygen and homes for the animals. And I was enjoying myself too, I was getting my sweat on, I was with my son, and I was smiling just because Richie was having so much fun. The Greenbelt is a hard trail for a seven year old, it’s hilly and long. I couldn’t believe how well he was doing, he was taking the hills like Lance Armstrong; I was so proud of him and told him several times.
I saw a side of my seven year old that I have never experienced before. I saw a mature, well mannered child, a definite proud mommy moment.
As I was beaming, enjoying this bike ride with my son, Richie turned his head and said “Mommy, sometimes when Matthew is sleeping I stick my finger up his nose and put it in his mouth”.
Yes, I am so proud.