The other day, Ryder found himself on the wrong end of an argument with Rhythme (my niece). “I HATE being wrong” he tells me, as I had just notified him that Rhythme was indeed correct. I almost had to laugh at that, as I know (from experience) that he has a lifetime of being wrong (in some shape, way, or form) ahead of him. I asked him “how could we learn to be right, if we were never wrong?” He stopped mid-rant and thought long and hard about this. Looking through me, I saw his eyes search deep for understanding. Instantly recognition washed over his face, he turned to his left and started singing the alphabet. In his resolve he found the answer is to stick with what you know, but now he also knows that the mail does not come on Sunday and he can add that to his list of fall back knowledge.
The 2012 race series that Austin was a participant in wrapped up this weekend and he finished 6th place overall for the 85 Beginners series, winning a trophy. I was shocked that he placed 6th. For the most part he had maintained a 5th place overall status in the series, but in the last 3 races he had done really bad (upsetting Ant in the worst way, to which I am certain only other dads can relate to) placing 12th, 9th and 9th in the last motos. I’m certain it was due to a pretty bad crash he had (in the race with the first decline in rankings) that landed him in the back of an ambulance for surveillance. It should be noted that we did not have him raced to the emergency room, as we all agreed that it appeared to be a mild concussion. We walked away from the night with a new first for Austin; first time in the back of an ambulance. Where I found myself understanding Austin’s new plight in the land of fear with this racing scenario, Ant pushed (fervently) for Austin to get back on the horse (so to speak). Yin meets Yang and the cycle continued until Austin decided for himself whether or not he wanted to be in the game. I was relieved when he overcame his fears and Ant? Thought it was about damn time, but he doesn’t fool me, he was relieved too.
Hearing “I love you” is a wonderful gift carried on the wings of hope and trust that we willingly bestow upon those we know our life is meant to be around. But, hearing “I love you” every 5 minutes of the day can be oddly annoying, almost frustratingly so and that is my every 5 minute gift from Rhythme. Who not only craves to hear it back, but (in a way) needs it so. So when the sting of irritation starts to burn on the very start of “I lov..” it’s hard to not feel guilty. Truth is, so many things about this situation brings on pangs of guilt, but I’ll try not to delve into that mess. While I usually, respond with an “I love you too,” (albeit sometimes with a hint of irritation) the other day I found myself sitting Rhythme down to discuss why she is so important to us and why we love her so. An effort that led to a lot of rambling that covered all the facts. I wanted her to see that we not only love her but consistently try to show her our love through acts, like taking care of her, tucking her in bed at night, holding hands, giving hugs, etc. We discussed all the different ways we can express our love to one another through our actions and shared a promise to always be there for one another. I promised her that I would never leave and that I would always, ALWAYS love her. To which she responded by simply raising her tiny little pinky finger to initiate the sacred pinky promise. A simple act that made my heart feel like it would burst, I gave her my pinky and we made our pact. I started to clear the table and get started on dishes when she said “Harmony?” and upon my acknowledgment of “yes?” she said, “I love you.” *sigh* I smiled reassuringly. Old habits die hard and I have the time to wait this one out.