Last spring was the first time I’d taken up playboating with any degree of seriousness. Playboating is where you dabble in the waves, skirting the edge of tumult, and using the force of the water to move around, but never really downstream. Truth be told I’d rather run a river any day, but unfortunately my life situation (little kids to care for, a husband with a job, and–oh yeah–the lack of rivers in Nevada) doesn’t allow much time for that. Instead I started going down to the kayak park with a friend of mine; a fellow Mom and an amazingly good playboater.
I often met her down at the kayak park just as Joe was getting off work. I’d bring the kids down and Joe would meet us there on his bike. Joe and the kids would catch crawdads, throw rocks and play on the playground. I would play on the waves and as soon as I had sufficiently trashed myself we’d all drive home together.
One day in particular Joe and the kids were sitting on the sidelines watching me. As usual, I kept getting dumped over in the wave (i.e. tipped upside down). Despite the fact that I’d always roll back up, this really concerned Ari. He kept yelling at me to “be careful!” Eventually he caught on to what was happening. He would still get worried when I went upside down, but he also started to celebrate with me if I actually did something that resembled a trick. “You did it Mom!” became music to my ears. So was “try it again Mom”. He made me try harder. (more…)