Wednesday, February 27, 2013

A Special Feeling

Yesterday I took a "snow day" and headed out to Liberty mountain in Pennsylvania with my daughter Sydney.  I excused her from her academic studies to pursue some physical education studies in snow skiing.  It was her first time, and my first time in a long time.  I hadn't skied in over seven years.

I have never been a skier, but went a number of times in my youth pastor days.  I know enough to keep me from getting over my head, and enjoy staying upright more than conquering dangerous terrain.  Truthfully, I had a moment on the hill yesterday when I realized that, given my challenges with health and obesity, there was a time not long ago when I don't think I ever planned on skiing again.  I'm glad that I have changed things in that part of my life.

Yesterday was Sydney's first experience with the sport.  We went with her uncle and cousins.  Part of the package I purchased was a two-hour group lesson for her, and, as it turned out, a rainy Tuesday is the perfect time because she ended up the only child in her class.  This meant one-on-one instruction.  She picked it up very well, and by the end of the day was skiing as well as I can.  It made me wish I had had lessons as a youngster. 

The highlight of the dreary day was skiing behind her on the bunny hill.  It was her first run down the mountain without her instructor.  She was fantastic.  I watched every twist, every turn.  I worried that she would be overcome by the competitive relationship she enjoys with her older cousin, and lose her sense of control, but she didn't.  And it was the first time that I recall truly enjoying skiing.  I have always done it, because other people wanted to do it.  But yesterday following her I enjoyed it because she was doing it, and we were doing it together.  Parenthood is a lot of work to do well.  but the rewards are so worthwhile.

--Ben

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