The Ideal Family.


Do you ever have ideals of what a wonderful happy family might look like?  I always envisioned an idyllic picture involving my whole family riding our bikes together off into the distance having adventures and fun together.  One big happy family.

But the reality is such a contrast.  How can this be?  Where have I gone wrong?

Firstly, to start off our idyllic experience, the eldest whines that they do not want to take the training wheels off.  They are not ready for that yet.  Ok, so that is the first hole in my idyllic picture.  I’m sure I was riding my bike at least a good 5km away from home by her age, all by myself.

Well I am determined to push on with this, I deliberately think of somewhere flat to start out so that it will be easier and more fun for the kids (and me).  Less than 5 minutes in and the child negotiations begin: “my legs are getting tired” and “I’m hungry/thirsty”.  We haven’t even gone anywhere yet. We only just got the bikes off the trailer.  Pow! There is the second hole in my idyllic picture.  I am not going to let this beat me, so I push on.

The next 5 minutes of our idyllic outing is punctuated with the kids being afraid of going DOWN the hills, or as I like to call them: gentle declines.  Pow! Hole number three.  Then there is the kids sulking about going UP hill, or as I like to call them: what hill?    Pow! Hole number four.

The kids suddenly draw my attention to a dog barking waaaaay off in the distance, I am surprised they can even hear it over the top of their whinging and whining.  “what if the dog tries to chase us on our bikes?” Well, my dear child, it will catch you because you are going waaaay slower than a snail.

Those holes in my idyllic dream are all coming too fast and furious now. My dream is crumbling before my very eyes as the reality sets in.

Finally, the kids give up and abandon their bikes.  That’s it, the dream is over. ☹

Ultimately my husband and I are left walking our own bikes and the bikes abandoned by the kids back to our car. All the while still hearing the kids complain about everything.  My husband and I try to wrangle 4 bikes, 4 helmets, 4 drink bottles, 2 backpacks and 2 children who want to be carried.

Where did that idyllic picture of the family bike ride go?  It disintegrated back into the atmosphere after being shot with too many holes.

Oh hang on a minute, I know what has happened.  The kids have brought me back to reality, they certainly know how to ground you….. in under 10 minutes flat.  I went wrong by having way too unrealistic expectations.  How silly of me to expect so much of my own children!

But we will experience this idyllic dream one day, when the kids are older, wont we?  There is always hope, and a dream to hang on to.  Or maybe I will try another idyllic family scenario some other time.  I’m sure it will be fine!?

Can you relate to this family bike ride story or have you ever experienced a reality check slap in the face when you have tried to experience an idyllic family dream of your own?