— Jill Hardy (@JillocityTweets) May 31, 2015
You want their minds to remain engaged, you want their spirits to be nurtured, but more than anything else, you want them to stop their incessant whining about being bored.
Wakeboarding, attending plays, going to water parks–even enjoying some of the free fun options that abound–there’s a lot of fun to be had in the metro this summer, and I’m happy to have had a part in investigating some of it for you.
As you can see from the picture above, one of my suggestions is the trampoline park Elevation. I won’t call this a relaxing outing, unless you’re one of those fortunate souls who can turn off your parenting instincts and not worry that your little lambkin is going to break his/her neck. But it is crazy fun.
There are definite rules at Elevation, intended to secure some degree of safety. Large signs instruct attendees to “JUMP WITHIN YOUR ABILITY”.
But does any ten-year-old have a realistic view of their “jumping ability”?
And we all know that safety is a drag, anyway.
My one tip (which I also share in the article) for your Elevation trip is this: Fill out the waiver online, before you go. The employees are very helpful and courteous (I have to wonder if their insurance policy covers Xanax prescriptions–or maybe it’s easier to tune out the shrieks of 574 children when you’re in your early twenties), but trying to remember children’s info, AND typing it into an iPad is a recipe for discouragement if you’re a harried 44-year-old mom. (Or, maybe it’s just if you’re me.)
My 20 year-old remarked, “Working here would be like helping people do their taxes at Chuck E. Cheese.”
But the fun is contagious, if you allow yourself to be infected.
I came in looking like this…
And in no time, I was transformed…
(I actually have two additional cautions for the middle-aged mom who crosses the line into Trampoline World; firstly, visit the ladies’ room before you jump. I don’t care what you THINK you know about your bladder–you may have weathered multiple births with your plumbing left in tip-top shape–this may give it a workout it’s never known. Secondly, if you have limited patience with other people’s irritating children, you might consider skipping the Ultimate Dodgeball game. The temptation to smack a smarmy nine-year-old in the face with a ball is serious. Trust me on that. Plus also, it’s just not worth getting one of your knees hyperextended. No matter how much he trash-talks, it just isn’t. Really.)
As we were walking to the theater to watch our SECOND screening of Avengers: Age of Ultron, my 13 year old daughter asked, “Why did the bad guys who made the Black Widow a secret agent sterilize her?”
I was preparing to give a heartfelt speech about how when you become a mother, your heart changes. I was going to say that things you think you’ll never do, you’ll do if you have a child who needs you to do that thing. (Or not do it.)
I intended to explain how fictional baddies who are making secret agents need those secret agents to be without attachment in this world, and of all the attachments that there are, I think that the bond between you and someone you’ve carried in your body (or gone through a shit load of trouble to adopt) is probably without comparison.
Because that’s the train of thought that was going through my mind, and those were the sentimental reasonings that I truly believed, in the moment, were behind the writers’ motivation in putting that very poignant piece of information about the Black Widow in the story.
I was going to recite all of that, and hopefully make a big impression on my dear childrens’ hearts about our own bond, in answering the question of why secret agent makers would fear someone becoming a mother, when… My 10 year old (who always walks a quarter of an inch behind me) stepped on my flip flop, almost tearing off my foot and provoking me to halfway scream out a horrible swear word.
And my 20 year old son said…”That’s why.”
Maybe it’s a little bit of both. Happy Mother’s Day to all of the mothers out there.
(Being a mom is better than secret agent-ing, anyway.)
The latest interview I conducted for GORGO fitness magazine was with the incredibly inspirational Steph Hammerman.
(You can read the interview for free here, although subscription to GORGO is well worth the price.)
“Inspiration” can be such a trite word. We use it for sunsets, days we wake up with more energy than usual, nice stories that give us warm fuzzies…
But people like Steph are the individuals who truly deserve the term.
The first woman with Cerebral Palsy to attain CrossFit level 2 certification, Steph is also a coach and motivational speaker who leads seminars on customizing CrossFit workouts for adaptive athletes like herself.
More than her awesome strength of will, and commitment to fitness, Steph’s good attitude is what I think makes her worthy of that sometimes-sappy word, “inspirational”; to go through life having to overcome people’s underestimation of your abilities is one thing, but to do it with a big smile is another. (And she does that. She also has a “Get Over It” attitude for those who are bothered by adaptive athletes in the gym, and I think that’s kick-ass, as well.)
I love talking to strong women as part of my job, and sharing their stories.
Go read Steph’s profile, and get pumped up.