Bicycle race

I do not have a driver’s license. I have never learnt. I have taken lessons. Twice now, once when I was 18 or so, but hated them so much that when I found an excuse to stop, I did with great glee. Second time was just after getting married, with the knowledge I would be having a baby soon I thought I needed to be an adult and learn at last. Again I hated pretty much every second of it and was permanently terrified. I get travel sick at the best of times, and everyone assured me I wouldn’t if I was doing the driving, but I felt really sick whilst driving. Admittedly I was pregnant and felt sick pretty much constantly for nine months, but driving definitely made it worse. Once I got particularly round I grabbed the opportunity to quit and never went back to it.

I intend to. I really do. Always having to rely on my husband to drive me everywhere must be a massive pain in the butt for him. It is a lovely way to ensure family time together, but sometimes it would be great to take the kids out without him and give him a break.

For my early adult life I always lived somewhere with good public transport. Now I live in a rural county with pretty appalling buses, none going anywhere you’d choose, or taking less than a whole day to get there. This means I am forced to live in the only town with an Emergency Department, and live within walking distance of the hospital. With my stupid shifts I think public transport would be pretty impossible wherever I lived to be fair. It’s not so bad. I love our town and our house, and me and my daughter do adventure out alone on the buses sometimes. Yesterday we went for a day out on the train together which she loved!

Even more shameful than my inability to drive is the fact that I have never even learnt to ride a bike! I am literally restricted to having my feet on the ground at all times for independent movement. One of my most vivid memories is, aged around eight, having my primary school teacher giving me private lessons after school, desperately trying to teach me before we went away for a school cycling trip. I was the only child in the whole class who couldn’t ride. He wasn’t able to rectify that situation. I ended up having to share a tandem with him on the trip, one of my enduringly most embarrassing experiences of my life.

On our camping trip last week both my nephews had a great time riding around on their bikes. My kids had a little wooden trike meant for toddlers but have not progressed from there. My daughter is five now and hasn’t ever even been on a scooter, let alone learnt how to ride a bike yet. I feel that this is a situation I need to rectify quickly, I can’t have her go through the same embarrassment as me. We are past this year’s birthdays, and Christmas feels a long way away, so I am thinking that maybe getting them both bikes (a balance bike for the two year old) for the beginning of the summer holidays might be a good idea. The problem is I don’t really even know how to start to teach my kids to ride. Any advice from you guys would be very much appreciated!!

And don’t even get me started on the matter of swimming…


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