Wednesday, June 2, 2010


Yesterday after church Doop invited me to go on a bike ride with him. Of course the girls were pumped up with excitement at the thought of the four of us going on a bike ride. My thoughts? A little apprehension, and maybe even a little fear since it had been a long time, a VERY long time since I had been on a bike ride. Sure I rode last year with the kids, but that was to the corner and back. It wasn't an actual bike ride, but more like a short jaunt. Doop was persistent with his invitation and soon he attempted to persuade me to say yes through encouragement. He told me that "bike riding is good exercise, and you could really use some exercise mom". Leave it to your kids right? They are always honest, and I have to admit that he was right. I really could use some exercise, but a bike ride? I figured I might as well try it since most other forms of exercise are painful, although an old broken and re-built pelvis on a bike isn't necessarily the best combination either. But, I decided to try it and so we all went outside to prepare.

We started by making sure the tires were adequately filled on each of the bikes. Next we made sure that everyone was properly dressed including actual shoes and socks rather than flip flops. With those items checked off the list we discussed distance, and mapped out our course. I was worried about Doop and his little legs keeping up, but he assured me that he was up to the task. Once our preparations were complete we set off on our ride. I must say I started out a bit shaky, but you know that old statement about riding a bike? Well, it's true. It didn't take long to get back into the hang of it, especially with Doop egging me on every step of the way. The girls led our pack and I rode side by side next to Doop with him constantly assuring me that I could do it. He told me he believed in me, and that he would stay right by my side as we set out on our journey.

As we rounded the first two corners he was happily enjoying the ride, and still encouraging me and my progress; however, about a mile into our journey little Doop started to lag behind. He was starting to struggle, but he didn't want to admit it. The girls would stop at each corner in order to allow Doop to catch up, and give him a short break from his constant double time pedaling, but as the ride continued on this just wasn't enough. When we finally convinced him that we should turn around he had already talked himself into the fact that he couldn't make it back. His negative self-talk and the burning in his legs had convinced him that the return ride home was impossible. It was now him who needed some encouragement. I circled back and stayed by his side just as he had with me in the beginning and talked to him. We talked about where our next rest stop would be, and I continued to encourage his progress letting him know that I knew he could make it. Sometimes we would have to stop for a short break prior to reaching our next destination, but I continued to encourage him to work toward the goal we had set. There was a point when he was completely ready to give up, and I kept him going through a promise of water at a good friends house along the way. This took his mind off of his burning legs, and he set his mind on getting himself there. He did shed some tears, but he made it and that promise of water tasted better to him than "any water he had ever tasted". The stop along the way also helped since my friend also encouraged him to continue. She told him she was in awe at how big his muscles were, and at how much he had grown since she had seen him last. This puffed him up, and gave him the boost he needed to continue heading toward home. The girls also encouraged him and they stopped here and there in between to help give him a sense of accomplishment as he reached each goal. At last we made it home. The girls arriving first, and he and I coming in together just as our departure. We made it together because of encouragement. Him encouraging me, and me encouraging him. We worked together, we stayed together, and we made it. We all need help along the way, and we need it often. We don't only need to get it, but we need to give it. Doop taught me a lesson today, and I hope someday he will remember it himself. Encourage one another. It is so important!


Charlotte said...[Reply to comment]

Great story. Good job Doop. I love the picture with his tongue out. It matched the story very well.

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