“Mommy and Daddy don’t want me to grow anymore. They don’t want me to get bigger.”
“They’re just kidding.”
“Yes, I’m sure they are.”
“I need to get bigger so I can drive a car.”
“I know. Your legs need to be long enough to touch the pedals!”
Sometimes it seems as if Jet is actually growing right before my eyes. At 4:30 on Friday afternoon, she put on her roller skates for a little practice before her mama was due to pick her up. She loves to skate on the carpet because the thick pile allows her to navigate without assistance. I took her hands so she could cross the wood flooring.
When she reached the carpet by the front door, Jet let go. She wanted to skate by herself. The lower-pile rug was a bit slippery, so she grabbed a nearby piece of furniture and stepped onto the wood floor.
“It’s like when babies learn to walk,” I mentioned to my husband, “First they hold on to the furniture, and then eventually, they let go and do it all by themselves.” I’m convinced that in that moment, Jet had an epiphany. She understood that if she wanted to learn to skate she had to let go. She took my words to heart and spreading her arms for balance, skated all the way down the hall under her own steam while her Papa and I breathlessly cheered her on. At the end of the hall, she turned around with an enormous grin on her face – and promptly fell on her bottom. After a moment of quiet shock, she took my hand, pulled herself up and went back to skating.
At the other end of the hall, she fell again. “That happens sometimes, it’s okay,” her Papa and I assured her. I could see that this fall was more painful than the first, but once again she rose to her feet. Jet wasn’t fearless, she was brave: she was well aware that falling would hurt and she was willing to take the risk. On second thought, I believe I actually did see Jet grow today!