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We knew she loved bikes. She had wanted to ride one for sometime. So we got Simran a bike as a surprise gift for her third birthday. A cute and girly pink bike adorned with a Dora bell :-).

But there was a problem- she would not sit on it. Forget about riding it. She would say that she loves it, but no, not sit on it. Well, fortunately it was just a phase. In a couple of days, she started to warm up to it. She sat on it, played with the bell, turned the handle left and right; she somehow got sheer joy out of doing this. But now, she wouldn’t ride it. She refused to pedal. She loved to have her pictures taken on it (or rather we loved to take her pics on the bike!) but no pedaling. This was also a phase but lasted a little longer than the last one.

The pretty-in-pink bike sat in a corner for a few days. So, I decided to take her and the bike to the play park more often, even if she wasn’t showing much interest in it. I don’t know why but I almost wanted to lure her into biking :P. So we went to the park with the bike a few times but she still wouldn’t pedal. I would have to push her while she sat on the bike seat.

Yesterday was one of such days. It was a bit chilly outside but nonetheless, we put on our jackets and headed for the park. She was all excited about taking her bike there. At the park she sat on it and asked me to push her. So I did, but I also kept asking her to pedal. But as usual she just wouldn’t do it. She kept asking me to push her.…yes, that was tiring! This went on for almost an hour.

I was still pushing; she was still having a gala time enjoying her painless ride! And then, in an instant, she started pedaling. Just like that. Out of the blue. I was thrilled to see that. But, the next moment  I realized that I was still pushing, or rather trying to hold on to her seat. Even though the bike had the training wheels on, now I was worried that she may fall!

And then I heard her say, “Mommy, don’t push!,” and off she went. As much as I had wanted her to ride on her own, I almost ran after her even when she didn’t want me to. But I stopped.

This was her first lesson on riding a bike on her own, and my first on when to let her go when she doesn’t need my support anymore :-).

Parenting, doing it right?

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