Tuesday, April 21, 2015

When the odds are stacked against you

The odds were stacked against me, and I was right. I was a little afraid, and I was right to be. But, this time I didn't let that stop me. 

I had a new bike, and I was determined to learn to ride it. Even in gravel and dirt ruts.

I loved everything about my farm except riding my bike. 

Riding my Schwinn banana seat bike was like taking my life into my own hands. 

I thought.  

Plus, I couldn't be like the other kids I went to church with who lived in town. 

They got to ride their bikes on the smooth sidewalks, not gravel!

My Dad told me that I would be a more steady and accomplished bike rider for having learned to ride on gravel, while the other kids at church learned to ride on nice, smooth concrete driveways.

Was this just to encourage me to keep trying? Or was it really true?

I remember my Dad teaching me how to ride my bike right there in my gravel driveway. I was 5 or 6. He would tell me to peddle, and he would hold on to the back of my bicycle seat as I started off. We would do this over and over and over because I would try and then fall down. 

Would I fall because of sheer inexperience, or because of the gravel and dirt ruts? Probably both.

My front tire would get stuck in a pile of gravel, which would veer me into a weird angle and down I would go. 

Riding on gravel was like riding on shifting sand. The gravel dictated where I rode. Where lots of gravel resided, I did not. I had to find the grooves in the driveway where our car tires had either pushed the stones into the earth, or smashed them to the sides to make a big rut of dry dirt.  

That's where my safe home became, in the dirt ruts. (sounds bad, but true!)

Dad kept working with me in the afternoons between farm chores. He'd hold on, say, "Okay, go!" and I'd go. And sometimes fall.

Then, one time I tried again. I was surprised this time to find out that I had been riding on my own. I had not realized that my Dad had let go several steps back.

Yes, the odds were definitely stacked against this little girl bike rider. Gravel was not my friend. 

At first.

How about you? Have you ever felt like the odds were stacked against you, but you kept at it and succeeded in spite of the odds?  I'd love to hear your story.

Blessings to you today, friend!



  1. Oh, I remember those days! My big bike was a Schwinn and I could barely reach the pedals. We had a gravel driveway, too, and roads that were tarred and cindered. There was always a risk to riding, but once you found a sweet spot, it was so worth it! Thanks for inviting us to hear your story and revisit our own. Blessings, friend.

    1. Thanks so much, Luana! I am glad I could help you revisit your own biking story. It sounds like ours were similar! We persevered! We're Super Sisters!! :)


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