24. Adventuring

…”It’ll be an adventure!”  Mom would say, her words a buffer to the disappointment that would ensue when things didn’t go as planned.  To the contrary my father would grumble and get angry and want to scrap the entire day …  “We’ll just turn around!”

“No!  Don’t turn around!”  Mom would say… “What sort of things are we going to get to learn from this… it’s exciting!”

When I was eight years old I was able to pick out my very own bike..it was beautiful!  It was a teal blue, with white handlebars, white wheels, and white pedals.  I was taking it on it’s maiden voyage on a ride I was sharing with my cousin Bjorn.  He was right in front of me as we cruised down that first hill away from our homes, heading toward Bodine.

Doubt creeps into my mind sometime like a distraction that makes me flinch and the next thing I knew I was struggling for control over the handlebars and crashing into the pavement before rolling into the ditch on the right hand side of the road.

“You OK?”  Bjorn had stopped at the bottom of the hill.

The first thing I noticed was that my brand new bike, my new prized possession, it’s once perfect teal paint was now scratched and scuffed, exposing the underlying metal.  The perfect white pedals and handlebars had been ripped open by the pavement.  I looked down and my knees and elbows were scratched and bleeding.

“You OK?”  He asked again.  I had forgotten to answer, having been so busy assessing the damage.

“I’m OK.”  I said, already crying.  “I’m going home, Beej.  We’ll do the ride later.”

When I limped home I found my mom washing the car in the front yard.  She saw that I was crying.

“What happened?”  She asked…(And this is when I like to think I rationally explained the incident and how upset I was at ruining my brand new gift and being sorry, but truth be told it probably came out in a few heaving words between tears that magically mothers seem to know how to translate.)

“Wow!”  My mom said (after looking over my elbows and knees to make sure I was OK) “Look what an awesome scar your bike got!”

“What?”  … I didn’t understand.

“Emma…”  She said, her hand touching the exposed metal and pealed teal paint of my bike.  “All of my favorite things end up getting scars…but I love scars, because each one tells a story…  I’m washing the car, I was just about to start waxing it.  I’ll do the car, you wash and wax your bike, OK?”  She said.  “You can buff out those scars and make it clean and shiny again, just never forget the story those scratches tell!”

-The biggest lesson I have learned from my mother?  How to be a super hero…

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