Shannon Dittemore



Know what you can’t impart, download, or summon?

The ability to roller skate… among other things, I’m sure.

But this roller skating thing got me thinking.

See, my 7 year old received an invitation to a birthday party at the local skating rink. Cool, right? Only problem is we’ve never taken him skating.

Total parent fail.

I mean, if there’s anything a 7 year old boy would like to avoid, it’s being the WORST at something. Especially at his b.f.f.’s birthday party.

So, the day before the party we took him skating. You know, let him give it a whirl, give him a quick lesson, and well… see just how damaged he was going to be when all was said and done.

And while my son is a fast learner, there’s something incredibly painful about watching your son fall every few seconds. So, we tried to catch him, we let him hang onto the wall, we practiced on the carpet, but progress was… well… non-existent.

And that’s when it hit me: we have to let him fall. Well, we have to let him get out there and try. If he falls, he falls. It’s the only way to learn.

You know what else, we wouldn’t let him hang onto the wall.

He scowled at us a bit, but he made it around the rink. He fell. Lots. But, he learned to take it slow. He found if he didn’t–if he went faster than he was learning–he’d fall right over.

It’s a tough lesson. One that comes with bruised elbows and skinned knees. And in a day and age where we can get most anything at the snap of a finger, the click of a button, or a drive through the drive-thru, it’s interesting to watch a child learn something by trial and error.

By falling and getting up.

And you know what, he likes falling, er, skating. He wants to go back. He wasn’t the best at the birthday party, not by a long shot, but he knew that falling wasn’t the end of the world.

And he knew how to get back up.

And really, if that’s all he learned, I’m one happy mama.



  • Comment by Karen — December 11, 2011 @ 2:14 pm

    Good lesson for all of us, huh?!? Besides, I could skate better if they made skates that fit me where I do most of my skating…and it’s not my feet…LOL

  • Comment by Lacey — December 16, 2011 @ 11:56 am

    I love this Shannon. And any time Justus wants to go roller skating…I’m totally down! 🙂

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