Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Riding with kids

Image from here
I have been riding my bike with one or other of my children on the back for many years, on and off.

I was a competent bike rider before I had kids. I like it. I participated in one of the Bicycle NSW Big Rides with Sister A and some friends in the early noughties. It was a 600km commitment and no walk in the park. Why we had to choose the year they explored the Armidale region is beyond me. There was plenty of hill climbing during that week! But I digress...

On Saturday, I stacked my bike with the Minx on the back.

We were out having a family bike ride. Now that the boys have broken free from the chains of training wheels we can do these things. Dew Drop wanted to ride his bike (with trainers still on) and the Minx said she would go on my bike with me. This left the Geege walking along beside Dewie, assisting Doo Dah with the occasional start and generally keeping things rolling. He said he had no fun.

Nugget and the Minx and I had broken away from the pack. We were free spirits, cruising the streets, wind in our hair. And then, quite suddenly, Nugget stopped to 'wait for the others'. I failed to respond quickly enough and then got my foot stuck in the pedal cage during the commotion of trying to bring the bike to a halt.

The Minx and I crashed to the ground. She freaked and I tried to keep it together but my leg hurt and my fingers fumbled as I tried to remove the seat belt in her seat. Her helmet stayed snugly on her head. Not a bump or a bruise to be seen. The Geege rescued us.

I don't think I have crashed my bike since I was a child. My freshly 'grazed knee' fits beautifully over the scar that I have sported since my childhood falls. My bruised thigh only half as big as my bruised ego.

I realised, after we all returned to our bikes (the Minx took up residence on the Geege's shoulders for the rest of the journey) and the drama was over, that we had survived one of my worst bike-related fears (relatively) unscathed. I found some comfort in this.

The Minx spent the return trip (sitting on the Geege's shoulders) trying to convince me that I could take the child seat off my bike now because she wouldn't be needing it. Dewie said he would have a go, but when push came to shove, he didn't want to either.

The end of an era.

The beginning of another anxiety for the Minx? You would think I would have learnt...

Do you ride with your kids?


Mama of 2 boys said...

Oh boy, that sounds very rattling MM. Riding is something that we are yet to get on board with, but we want to, probably as soon as the boys are old enough to ride their own bikes unassisted. Mind you, I don't know how good I'll be, as I haven't ridden in years myself. Poor Minx and poor you. Hope your wounds heal quickly and hope the emotional ones heal sooner than later too xo

Claireyhewitt said...

I am not a great bike rider in the city, I fear driveways and round abouts and stuff...oh and my balance is poor, in fact my Mum had to ride me to school in the baby seat because I couldn't ride myself...Mum used to give other kids a ride around the was quite a hit!

Miss Mandy said...

I struggle to ride full stop. feel for both of you. nothing worse than a grown up with a scun knee!

Mum on the Run said...

My bike fear realised.
I don't have the confidence to carry a passenger - but love the idea of it.
I feel for both of you.

Photographer Mum said...

We have just gotten out of the stage of having them on our bikes with us, well, 2 of them at least. Nick usually has Mr 2 on the child seat and I used to take 2 in the bike trailer - best thing ever on flat surfaces. Hills were a killer. At the moment, we take them to the park with their bikes and we supervise. Looking forward to all riding together one day though.

Kelly Exeter said...

Eek! I got put off ever having a child of mine in one of those seats after seeing a friend of mine riding with her wriggly toddler in one! I think I would be one giant bucket of anxiety the whole way!

I hope you're not too banged up C!

Maxabella said...

Poor Minx. I've always found parents with the little ones on the back to be brave, but I suspect their bike skills are way better than mine!

Minx will be riding her own bike soon enough. x

Fiona said...

Ouch! That bruised thigh reminds me of Futsal days ... Was that only last year ??? Glad to hear you were all able to get back on, have heard of too many nasty bike accidents lately (not with kids).

River said...

Glad you and the minx are okay, that sounds scary. I never rode with my kids, they each had bikes as we could afford them, but mostly they rode around the block, no long distance round the town and through the park stuff, plus I didn't own a bike then. I have one now, but don't ride much especially now that it's cold and wet for the next few months.

Tricia said...

I'm glad both you and the Minx are ok. Having a fall while Little Eco was on the bike was something I regularly feared. thankfully itnever happened.

I hope the Minx forgives you soon ;-) x t.

Anonymous said...

Oh, awful. Poor minx and poor mum. We've only had one trailer incident and it rolled over going up a gutter (husband, not me). But with two kids in it, it's getting way too heavy to pull so we're looking for another option. I love riding with the kids but we're luck we have a good bike path near us, otherwise I don't think I'd brave roads or footpaths.

Seana smith said...

Unbelievably... we have never ever had a child seat on the back of a bike. Are we nuts?? Have we been for 15 years of parenthood? Yes, I think so.

I had been meaning to for about the last 12 years... and now we're too late. Another parenting fail to manage finally when I am a granny!

Quill and Ink Handmade said...

Oh, hoping that you're ok!

We bought the kids balance bikes at 2, and within a pretty short period of time, they were riding big bikes without training wheels. Which means that there is no way in the world that they'd be sitting on the back of a bike with Mum when they can be cruising the streets on their own :)

Have a lovely weekend!

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