Today was my son’s first day of learning to roller skate in the glossy, wooden rink, rather than on the soft carpet he’s practiced on the first two times.
He has a teacher, one who knows what she’s talking about, but you wouldn’t know it from his fear. I stood beside him the whole class — repeating directions, keeping an eye out for kids flying fast and ready to take us all down, and let him hold on to me long enough for him to get his balance
and then this happens:
you’re doing it. I say as he pushes off the wall
no, I’m not doing it, he says (as he is clearly is not flat out on his behind)
yes, you’re doing it, I repeat
no, no I’m not.
hold onto my hand. (and then you can even hear him growl at me)
Okay, I gotcha, I assure him again
It reminded me how many times I’ve had the same conversation with God.
Look, you’re doing it, He says
No I’m not… (I’m not good at this, what was I thinking, it’s too hard, I’m too scared)
Yes, look — you’re doing it.
No I’m not (It looks nothing like I think it should, others can do it better, I just can’t do this)
No, hold my hand (why aren’t you helping me? why didn’t you give me this gift?)
I’ve got you. See?
Do you see yourself too?
It’s not fun to spend our whole lives never taking risks and not living because of fear.
We grow when we learn to stand in today’s strength.
At the end of our first lesson, we had created a rhythm that he was more comfortable with. He’d skate and hang onto my finger until I started to lift my hand away and let him go. He skated. I cheered. and I never left his side.
Our teacher told us it was OKAY to fall and that we can’t learn to skate without learning how to fall well.
So, I waited to see him fall..
Waited for him to see how when his legs gave out (and he landed in the position that someone over 40 wouldn’t be able to recover from) that he could still be good. How he could get back up and start again — because he was never moving backward, he was moving forward.
Yes, we can’t stand in anything that’s worthwhile either unless we’ve fallen down a few times.
Is it time to get back up, friend? <3