Thursday, November 19, 2009

Accounting for All But One Variable

I had not had to ride my bike to work since the SEPTA strike earlier this month. But with Aaron home enjoying a "Mommy day," I decided to save Amy the trip to and from Jada's pre-school and take her myself on the bike. Given how hairy my last trip with Jada was - broken tire, tweaked wrist, near-death experiences - I decided to take a moment to make suitable preparations. I stopped at red lights, remembered my reflectors and my wrist brace, and rerouted my path to avoid major streets that didn't have bike lanes.

I failed to account for one variable: Jada herself. The ride to school was uneventful, but after a long day at school, Jada's disposition was noticeably more difficult on the way home. She kept insisting that I respond in a certain way to her conversation, whether to laugh because of something she thought was funny, or to repeat something she had said; and scolded me with increasing whininess when I couldn't immediately comply. When I adjusted my shoulder bag and accidentally hit her in the face, she started to cry and say, "You hurt my feelings." The final half of our ride home consisted of her whimpering or repeating that.

I suppose such is the plight of the parent of a little one: you can account for everything except for the little one. Oh well, at least we made it home safely.
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