Monday, June 22, 2009

A Father/Son Moment

. Monday, June 22, 2009

I've talked some about Boo Jr's developmental issues on my blog. However, I don't think I've talked much about issues with his motor skills. Boo Jr was late hitting his milestones for gross motor skills. He was Mr. Rolly-Man in order to get around instead of walking. Boo Jr was 22 months when he first started walking. He seems to be behind his peers when it comes to sports and other activities that require coordination. Not that I had any preconceived notion that my son would be an athletic superstar, but this is one area that's been frustrating for me.

We bought Boo Jr his first bicycle about 3 years ago. It didn't get used very much over the past three years. It was challenging teaching my son how to pedal. I'm sure that he was strong enough to pedal. I just think he didn't "get it". Teaching him the concept of steering was difficult too. So it wasn't the funnest thing in the world for me - guiding his handlebars with one hand while stooping over and turning the pedals with the other. The fact that it's quite hot and humid here in Richmond during the summer made it even less enjoyable. I tried my best to not let Boo Jr see my frustration but it was hard to not let it show at times. Honestly, I think the primary reason for my son not wanting to ride his bike was his lack of confidence. So we didn't puch him into riding if he didn't feel like it. Like I said, we didn't end up riding that bike much.

We bought Boo Jr a new bike about a week ago since he has outgrown his first bike. It was also a new opportunity to get him intersted in riding again. My son could pedal OK by this point but was scared to go too fast. It had been a challenge teaching him to use his brake, but was constantly using it once he learned how. He would also freeze up if he started going off-course. They talked about bicyle safety at school right before school got out so that peaked his interest again. The new bike fit him much better. I was let down though that whatever confidence he had gained with riding his first bike disappeared with his new bike.

But we had a breakthru while riding his bike yesterday. Boo Jr would constantly brake his bike and stop because he was scared. Up to this point, I had been constantly reminding him that he was wearing his helmet, that I was right there, and that I would let him crash. I needed an idea to get him to pedal faster so he could maintain his momentum. So on a flat part of the road, I challenged Boo Jr to a race. My son likes to race at everything and always has to be first. Having a race really perked up his excitement level and he really started turning those pedals. The expression of excitement and joy on his face was priceless and will be one that I will remember forever. I hope this excitement and more importantly my son's confidence in hiself continues to grow. It really made my Father's Day.


It's you know who! said...

that's great! glad you had a good day, and i'm sure it won't be too long before you're riding together. :)

Anonymous said...

That's really sweet, boo. He's finding the rhythm & pace that work best for him.


Mohawk Chieftain said...

Gee, Boo... I'm sure sorry that the little guy has some problems. But, with time & luck, he looks like the kind of kid who will make out alright, and... he's got family who loves him and cares, so that really puts the odds in his favor.

Boo said...

Thanks for the kind words everyone.