Lessons I Have Learned from my Son
Cody lives in Kings Beach, at Lake Tahoe, and has been diligently riding five or more days a week for the past few months, even if just a few hours in the morning before reporting to work at 1:00 P.M. He has made terrific progress in his riding, mastering lots of acrobatic moves he had been working on the past few years. He demonstrated a few for us, taking some runs through "the boxes", where he outclassed all the other riders we saw today, with more complex stunts. I was in awe, not only of his accomplishments, but also of his dedication towards improvement... he must be putting in about 15-20 hours a week right now. Several times in my life, I have wanted to just drop everything and get really fit and really good at something physical, either hiking, yoga, or snowboarding. Life has always managed to get in the way, and even though there were periods where I was putting in five hours a week at yoga, or ten hours a week hiking, I have never been able to set aside enough time to pursue excellence in the physical realm. I realize that there is still a chance to make massive improvement, and he is one of my current role models.
Cody also has a lot of joy in his life, even though he doesn't find his job intellectually challenging, and is often short of cash. He was so happy to be out on the slopes on a beautiful spring day, that he was frequently bursting into song, filling our day with tidbits from old musicals and jazz musicians, just for the fun of it. I have always been the kind of person to be embarassed if I attracted undue attention, and I admire his lack of self-consciousness in being able to so easily express the joy he is feeling. I would like to learn more of that.
He has been our riding coach since we started five years ago, and has helped us make a lot of progress, and face our hurdles. Today, while he was working with Nikki to master a turn, he said "What's the worst that's going to happen? You'll slide down to your knees". Too often, we over-exaggerate what the worst to happen will be, and cripple ourselves with our fears of what is the very worst. His advice to step back and really assess what really would happen in a given situation is a good lesson; it usually isn't as bad as we think.
I am very thankful to have raised a son who could keep me thinking and learning. Maybe I did a pretty good job after all!