This past summer we spent most of our time in our city as I was involved more in medical work.
However, one of my greatest joys is playing with my children and seeing them learn and grow.
I helped teach Meng Yuan (#2) how to ride her bike….. well…..ok ….. she basically taught herself by watching her older sister ride in circles around her.
She has had training wheels on her bike for quite a few months, and so she believed she was ready to lose the training wheels.
So with a little sweating and grunting the training wheels came off.
We then walked our bikes over to a large plaza on the nearby university campus.
We like going there because it is such a large wide open place with few people, few bikes, and even fewer cars.
The thinking is that there is not much that she could run into out on the plaza.
Once on the plaza I jogged alongside her while she pedaled furiously.
At first, she was leaning one way and then the other way.
There were some wobbles and even tumbles, BUT within about 15 minutes I was amazed to see her balancing perfectly and riding away from me without difficulty.
One more step towards independence….
As parents we all want our children to take these steps….. just maybe not so fast…..
On our walk home that day I distinctly remember a wistful feeling mixed with a pleased pappa feeling that my little girl was successful and was growing up.
I know that you who are veteran parents speak of the speed between infancy and matrimony, so I am going to savor these moments where my precious little girl looks up at me with her big, trusting eyes and says, “Help me, pappa….”