Welcome to activity idea #1 for my new series, The Winter Blahs! Instead of fighting the cold for this one, I thought I should try joining it. This weekend I went ice skating with a group of families and I have to admit that it was a lot of fun. The rink was tiny, the skates uncomfortable, the temperature frigid – but I still enjoyed myself. As I watched the skaters (of all ages) go round and round, I realized I was smack in the middle of a great teaching opportunity. What better way to teach our children (and ourselves) about life than on a cold, hard, circular rink?
You’re going to fall. It didn’t matter the skill level of the skater, I think I saw everyone fall at least once. And you know what they all did afterwords? Get up. A few us might have been a little embarrassed, a little sore, and maybe even cried a few tears – but none of us stayed down for long. We got up, shook it off, and started going around again. I know I will be reminding my kids (and myself) of our resiliency on the ice rink when we stumble in other situations going forward.
If you don’t try, you don’t have fun. As I’ve said before, I am an anti-perfectionist. And I encourage others to be as well. Ice skating can be a great lesson that joining in the activity is where the fun is. It’s not in being the best, or being perfect. Ice skating is one of those great activities where perfection is absolutely unattainable!
Complaining isn’t cool. I watched a few of the kids in my group start to complain about the cold, or the wet, or the difficulty of the activity. But you know what? The other kids didn’t pay attention. They simply got their skates on and proceeded to fall, laugh, and chase each other. You know what happened to the complainers back on the bench? They figured out that they were missing the fun, stopped their negative comments, and joined the party. Now who among us couldn’t use that lesson?