I’m a mean mama

“I need a size 8 in women’s and a size 12, 1, and 3 in kids’,” I told the guy behind the counter. He handed me four pairs of roller skates and we headed to a nearby table to lace up. (In case you’re thinking I was crazy and went roller skating alone with three kids… don’t worry. I brought my best friend Blair along for the fun too!)

Before I could even get Max’s skates on, he was already whining… “I don’t want to skate. Can’t I just watch?”

“No,” I said. “We’re all going to skate… and we’re going to have fun doing it!”

We made our way to the rink and Ava took off solo. She absolutely loves roller skating and even though she falls down about a thousand times, she always has a smile on her face and gets right back up and tries again. I decided I’d take turns skating Max and Lia around the rink.

The first hour of open skating was practically a disaster. I skated with Lia and when she was getting the hang of it, she would say “this is so fun! I love you mommy!” And then she would fall and decide it was my fault. And she would scream, “I don’t like you! You made me fall! I hate roller skating!” We went back and forth like that for a solid hour.

And Max was no better. I skated with him and attempted time and time again to get him to understand that he needed to keep his center of balance directly above his skates. He fell a few times… pretty hard. The girls seem to have mastered the graceful slide-fall, but Max… well, he kinda just goes knees first. He fell a couple times and was crying (keep in mind he’s very sensitive!). He told me he was done skating and I told him he had to keep going.

“I don’t like roller skating! You’re mean!” he said. I just smiled at him and said, “You’re gonna keep skating. I know you can do this. Let’s have a snack and then we’ll skate some more.”

We had poor timing on the snack part, so we stood in line at the snack bar for awhile to get our treats. We squeezed into a tiny booth and the girls shoved nachos into their mouths as quickly as they possibly could. Max took his time eating his Kit Kat. We rarely eat junk food like that, but we were at a roller skating rink… what else are you gonna do? It turns out a crappy snack was all we needed!

After snack time, we had about 30 minutes of skating time left. I did a few laps with Ava and even one with Blair. She and I took turns taking Max and Lia around the rink and you’ll never believe it, but they finally started getting the hang of it! By the time they kicked us out, both girls were fussing about wanting to stay. And even Max admitted that he had a good time and wanted to go roller skating again. I asked him if he was happy that I made him keep trying and he said he was.

The truth is, about twenty minutes into our roller skating adventure, I started questioning whether I had made the right decision. I wondered if Max was right and I was being mean. I wondered if Lia would forgive me for all the times I clearly made her fall. I wondered if Ava would cry if I made her leave early. And isn’t it weird how parenting is like this so often? We go about our business, doing what we think is best for our kids, but then we start questioning ourselves. I knew that I should make them keep at it. And I’m glad I did… even though it was hard and messy and there were lots of tears, we came out on the other side stronger and better. And maybe, just maybe… our next roller skating adventure will be even better!

Have you experienced a situation like this recently with your kids? I’d love to hear about it! Leave me a comment and tell me all about it! P.S. I only took my iPhone in and I got exactly zero good photos… so, instead you get to see a few adorable videos of us roller skating… because selfie roller skating videos are super awesome.

Lia roller skating from josh solar on Vimeo.

 

Max roller skating from josh solar on Vimeo.

 

IMG 5892 from josh solar on Vimeo.

 

Jenny (290 Posts)

Jenny Solar is the co-founder of The Happy Family Movement and Phone Monsters, Inc. She's a wife to Josh and mama to three kiddos: Max, Ava, and Lia. She's passionate about creating memorable experiences for her family and inspiring others to do the same.


6 comments
SaraKirkSchneider
SaraKirkSchneider

I think we very well were roller skating at the same time!  Me, by myself, lugging my kids (coast, boots, mittens, an arsenal of thing i asked them NOT to bring that they brought anyway) into the rink.  Same as you, 20 minutes in I'm thinking to myself "what the F was I thinking??!?!?"  I was in a sheer sweat JUST GETTING THEIR SAKTES LACED!  I opted out of skates because I KNEW I'd be helping my two youngest and thought a solid two feet might be helpful (even though I REALLY wanted to skate!).  It was a whiny mess for a bit and I honestly think it was FEAR.  I think the kids are very much like adults and like the question you asked on FB yesterday ... what is stopping you?  FEAR.  Fear of the unknown, of failure, of embarrassing themselves and more.  I think, like us, once they step into it and try it out so much of that fear disappears and then that feeling of accomplishment starts winning.  YAY!  Many times my kids are TERRIBLE for the first 20 minutes of something then remarkably they turn the corner and we leave happy.  I have friends that it is the opposite -- start awesome (bc of the excitement factor) and end kicking and screaming.  I'm not sure what is worse?  Both require parents preservation and patience!  ANYWAY.  Sorry for the novel.  YOU ROCK!

MichellePosey
MichellePosey

I'm so mean. I made my oldest try ice skating with his boy scout troop. I coaxed my youngest back onto the ice after his first fall by agreeing to sing "Rudolph" with him. They both wound up having an amazing time, and guess who left with a fractured elbow? If you guessed me, you would be right.

RosemaryWineGustin
RosemaryWineGustin

I'm the meanest mommy in the world too!  So I guess we are tied.  Have you seen those skating walker things to help kids skate?  It is like a PVC pipe contraption on wheels to help the kids.  They push it around to skate.  Where did you guys even go?  I haven't seen a skating place in ages!!

happyfammvmt
happyfammvmt moderator

@SaraKirkSchneider it's so nice sometimes to know that its not just us!! And I will happily take rocky start with a great finish over great start with a rocky finish any day! Next time we get together we'll have to take them ALL skating just to see if we can handle it... ha ha!!

happyfammvmt
happyfammvmt moderator

@MichellePosey oh my gosh Michelle! Ah! I'm thrilled the kids had a great time! Bummed you fractured your elbow! Hope that's all healed up now :) Keep being mean!

happyfammvmt
happyfammvmt moderator

@RosemaryWineGustin we have used those walker things before and they are awesome!! But they don't seem to have them here in KC. We went to Landmark Skate in Lees Summit... they seem to always have Groupon deals