I was brave.
It was even my idea.
It might have come from a momentary feeling of confidence or finally resting in knowledge of the Lord's hand on all things, but I let him go.
All the way. Around. The block. On his bike.
When I first mentioned it to him, his little six and a half year old eyes looked confused. As the reality of what I suggested sunk in, his eyes went from confused to confident to excited.
As he geared up with his helmet, I tried to remind him of some safety issues without sounding like a maniac. My mind's eye pictured myself running to the backyard as soon as he left to watch him appear between the neighbor's houses, checking to see if he was making it. I heard myself saying things like, "Watch for cars backing out of their driveways, you don't need to say 'hi' to anyone, if someone stops to ask you a question, just keep going..." as he already started to head down the driveway. I was following him. Still talking.
"Are you ready?"
"Yep." I said.
"See you in a couple of minutes, Mom." He looked back at me with a confident smile before he set off on his little journey. That picture will have to be kept in my mother's heart.
Of course I parked myself in the driveway determined not to panic if the time seemed a bit longer than I anticipate, not to try to see him through the houses behind us, and not to let on to anyone that I had just reached a milestone of my own.
As his blue helmet head came around the corner, I sighed with relief. He'd made it. I really didn't doubt it, but somewhere in my "logical" thinking, I could see that the one time I allow him to venture out on his own...that's when something would happen. But it didn't, and the smile on his face as he arrived back home was the incentive that I needed to know it would be ok.
He's been around the block at least one more time since then. He tells me when he plans on going, so I can watch (stand guard) for his return.
Oh, the parallels I could make between this event and the beginning of the school year.
So, I did it. And so did he.
We both did it.