"Mom, let's race!" How many times has every parent heard those words? From toddler to teenager, all kids want to win, and beating mom and dad is an ultimate victory.
Back in the training wheel and stroller days of our family, I used to envision what family activities would look like as they grew up. The kids would slowly improve until a magical time when we rode, ran, skied, fill-in-the-blanked at basically the same level. Then, after enjoying a few years of playing as equals the baton would be handed off and the kids would be better than me at everything sporty.
Though like most of parenthood, the reality is never quite like the vision. It turns out kids don't really improve athletically at a slow steady pace, instead they leap frog from level to level at an incredibly fast pace. That magical time of being at the same level is minutes not years.
This year all three kids in their own individual way have left me in their athletic dust. It started with Jaley on the ski slope. We were at the top of the mountain and she said, "Mom, let's race." She was headed down the mountain before I even answered. I really did try to catch her, but I didn't have a chance. She was back in line for the lift by the time I made it to the bottom of the hill.
Then, it was Sarah at spring break. While I'm happy to hike for hiking's sake, she wanted to make the trail a little more interesting. She set a spot and said, "Mom, let's race." Off we went. It was kind of like racing my minivan against a Maserati. I was hopelessly outmatched against her.
Last, it was Mick this weekend. He is only 7 and, yes, he schooled me. Scott and Sarah were out of town, so I grabbed Jaley, Mick, and a friend and headed for a mud run at the Kids Obstacle Challenge Race. We were the first wave of the day and Mick yells "Mom, let's race." just before he darted off like a jack rabbit. I wasn't worried, it was a long course, he would tire quickly and I could catch him. Ha! Next thing I knew he wasn't in my line of site. Ego aside, I didn't know if the course was well marked or if he would be able to make it over the obstacles without help. I went from jog to sprint. I made up enough of the gap. At least I could see him. Every time I got close, he took it as a challenge and picked up the pace. Over walls, through tunnels, scaling netting, and Tarzan swinging into massive mud, he was ahead of me right through the finish line. What do I expect? Mick hiked Yosemite's Mist Trail at age 5.
I'm sure there will be many family athletic endeavors ahead, but the baton has officially been passed. The kids will either be holding back to hang with me or cheering me on at the finish line.
Beyond getting passed by the kids, we have been making the most of summer vacation. After our travels East, we finished all the new puzzles and maxed out on junk TV before the real world caught up with us. It turns out bills, laundry, and grocery shopping do not take a summer vacation. With less than a month left of break, I'm back to busy ways. I'm finally getting to several house projects that never happened when we moved in, the girls are back to field hockey and taekwondo, and for Scott work is business as usual. Without the pressure of Saturday sport games and homework, we are saving our weekends for fun. While Jaley, Mick, and I were playing in the mud, Sarah and Scott checked out the sites in Chicago. Sarah is on her way home now and Scott is staying for work tomorrow. If our plans hold, the next few weekend will be just as much fun.
That is life in MomZania.