My 7 year old daughter rode her bike on her own yesterday.
It all finally clicked.
Two days ago she claimed she couldn't, wouldn't, didn't want to.
Yesterday she jumped on it and took off.
This morning she rode it to school.
I think I see my little girl riding away. I see her gaining independence. I see her seeing that she can fly on her own.
What a passage.
And for me, a touch of sadness because I realized I will likely not get to do that again. The blessed father of 5, I remember each of them taking that first spin on their own.
The most memorable was my oldest daughter. Miss Independent. When she was 4, I recall coming home from work and being unable to get into the garage because she was riding her bicycle in there. Which wasn't all that unusual for her as a practice area with her training wheels. Then I noticed the training wheels were off.
"Who took them off?", I said, jealous that someone else had helped her accomplish this amazing feat.
"I took them off myself." She hasn't looked for much help since.
Oh well, I'll just have to look for new beginnings. Being a grandpa now, I can teach the grandkids important things. Spitting for distance. Lighting a fart. How to smoke ribs. The fine art of making faces. How to annoy their mother who is my daughter.
Life is grand. And weird. Nobody prepares you for these precipices.
Maybe there should be a class in school about becoming a grown up.