Today was the day. The family snowboard lesson.
There had been a lot of talk about this day and we all approached it from a different perspective.
Luc (eight-year-old son): I must get on that snow. Now.
Lana (five-year-old daughter): I'm scared and I won't do it.
Me: Should I buy the boastful skiing souvenir t-shirt or the boastful boarding one?
Gary (husband): I'll book the hospital room now.
Lucien Gordon, our instructor for the morning, found the four of us quizzically examining our bindings in the lesson area. We spent some time learning how to stand, how to stop and where to put our weight before heading over to the lift. We went up and took a very long time coming down, practicing our skills and learning new ones as we went.
This whole time my eyes were on my daughter. She has the least experience even being in snow, let alone sliding down it. She is naturally timid in new situations and was genuinely frightened about the lesson. I wanted to be sure that she was having fun, that I didn't push her too much. Or, if I had, I wanted to rescue her.
It didn't take long for the smiles, then the grins, then the sheer exhilaration that she was actually snowboarding. She fell and got up, again and again.
By the end of the lesson Luc had just enough taste of snow to want more. Gary's hospital room remains empty and I'm still undecided about how to express myself on a t-shirt. But in my mind, Lana is the real story.
Lucien showed me how I could continue snowboarding with Lana. Where to stand in relationship to her, how to hold my hands for her to push against them and so on. We tried it after lunch but gave up pretty quickly. I apologized to Lana, saying that I'm just not good enough to teach her.
"Well," Lana said. "Maybe I could teach you."
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