I mentioned before how much we like to go hiking while in Colorado well it would only be fair to also mention the bad with the good. The last hike we went on will definitely not be one of my fonder memories from our trip.
It ended up being much harder and steeper than I was planning. Plus Andrew had woken up on the wrong side of the bed and he decided he couldn't/wouldn't before we even reached the trailhead. It was just plain hard, he started out with less than a good attitude and sometimes I just don't know when to push and when to just comfort him and let him be.
I know it was hard and scary for him. He felt unbalanced and tired very quickly. I really struggle with not wanting him to feel like he "can't" do something or for him to quit before he even starts but I don't want to be unreasonable. I felt really really conflicted but we pushed on for a ways hoping it would smooth out like the trail guide said and that Andrew would push through. But it was just too much so we made an executive decision to turn the group around.
Much to my surprise, after kicking and screaming the whole way up Andrew gleefully trotted down the slope back toward the car like it wasn't even a big deal, I guess his motivation to get off that mountain was really intense. His whole attitude was different and he finally started listening to Pa's advice on where to step and learned to go down with his feet at an angle and had a much easier time. I actually thought it was much harder going down, maybe it was the baby on my back and worrying about slipping on the loose rocks. The car was a welcome sight and we left and went to the park where we had a nice time playing and enjoying our picnic lunch.
Moments like these are just not my favorite as a mom. Was I asking too much of him? Or was I letting him manipulate me with his emotions? Am I the worst mom ever? I still don't know but we definitely won't be trying that trail again anytime soon. Where can I find short/mild trail recommendations for kids with stamina and balance challenges? I'm sad that physical things may always be harder for Andrew, I try really hard to find activities that include all of us but it's getting harder with same agee boys that are on such different pages with their interests and abilities. Why can't life be more clear cut? Where did I put my mothering manual ;-)?!
Of course it's not lost on me what a blessing from God to even be having this conversation. I scarcely believed that hiking a mountain trail would ever be a possibility 6 years ago. But in the same breath it would be a disservice to both kids to stop there and declare the race over years ago. It would be wrong not to expect and hope and pray that they would smash through each new boundary, always growing, never giving up.
I wish this had been a better experience for everyone but sometimes it just doesn't go how we plan. Andrew, I'm sorry if I pushed you too hard to do something you really didn't want to do but I'm proud of you for finishing strong. Hopefully you won't be too scarred for life ;-)
At least there was some good scenery
Lovely group photo with the grandparents. Andrew was too mad to look up at me, poor guy !
Adam and Granny having a fun. Which way do we go?
The mind of man plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.