September 20, 2012

The Cartwheeler: The Thing I Love Today

So Bernard St. Pottamus is sort of addicted to gymnastics. Did you know?

On Saturday mornings she gets up and puts on her spandex. Teeth are brushed, her butt is scrubbed, and her hair is strapped up.

“My hair is getting so long like Rapunzel’s, Mama!” she said to me this week, as I elasticized her ‘polar bear ears.’

I’m not sure if Moo practiced gymnastics while she was with her dad over the summer, but it hasn’t mattered if she did not. She is back and making it count now. Only 3 weeks into the fall gymnastics class and she cartwheels all over the place. I swear, she’s close to a one-handed cartwheel, too. She does them with a running start outside, she does them with a booty hop inside. She’s even doing roundoffs (without realizing it, of course).

Often times, Hayley will come home from her Advanced 1 class and demonstrate what she’s working on for all of us. Walkover bridge, running cartwheel, or tuck jumps. Mabel watches Hayley, then walks to the living room (my child with no fear), and promptly does a walkover bridge, a running cartwheel, and tuck jumps. Hmpf. As you can imagine, Hayley is not so crazy about this copying, but Mabel is showing more natural talent than we realized. She’s years ahead of herself.

We put the girls into gymnastics because they wanted to jump and tumble. Gymnastics is fun for them. We could care less about competitions or Olympics or that whole thing.

Except on Saturday, the owner’s husband pulled me to the side and told me that Mabel is on their ‘watch’ list. She is demonstrating skill and body control several levels ahead of the class she is in, and she could easily be competing for their gymnastics team. She won’t be a Big Dipper for much longer. In fact, he told me she was going to pass Hayley very soon. Well, oh my.

As a mother with multiple kids, I am stuck smack between incredibly proud of my talented Mabel and slightly concerned about my sensitive Hayley. But God will work it out.

Mabel will start having some one-on-one time during her classes. We want her to learn to tumble safely, and we want her trained well.

If God’s given the Moo a talent to hop and jump and flip, well, I won’t say that I’m surprised. The child is fearless and full of energy. And she gets to wear polar bear ears as often as she wants, then.

[Click on the "play" triangle, Nana.]

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