Sunday, July 20, 2008

Are we passing Elmo in the fast lane?

My boys turned three a few weeks ago.

They also finished potty training...well, let's say they are 95% which is good enough for me, granted I am hoping for a 100% in the next month or so.

As a reward for wearing underwear 24 hours a day, they would get a special gift. They would get their very own ATV racing helmet!

This was a big deal. We've been talking about it for several months. We pass by the motorcycle store Xtreme Machines almost every day.

The big day had come and we pulled into the lot. Not knowing what to expect, I took a big breath and carried my "babies" in.

The men were really nice and helped me locate some helmets quickly. The boys were more than anxious to try on these giant helmets. The looked so large, like my full face helmet for skydiving or my once used motorcycle helmet.

TheY chose colors. I waited for the sales guy to retrieve the new helmets.

The boys made themselves at home immediately locating a 70cc ATV and playing with the keys. They had not graduated past their 12v Fisher Price ATVs with max speed of 5 mph. These 70cc ATVs will go up to 20 mph and you can adjust the speed as they learn. I asked the sales guy about them. His 3 year old is already riding one. I know that these are inevitable and the boys will have them. I mean, am I ready for this? I still have the blankets the nurses wrapped around them when they were born!

They looked like such big boys sitting up straight on those little ATVs. When they put the helmets on, they looked a bit like...well, bobble heads. My sweet little boys. These helmets would replace the Elmo bike helmets we purchased a year ago. Were we coming to a new right of passage? Were they going to be decked in racing gear - head to toe - before we knew it?

I was excited for them and at the same time, just a wee bit melancholy for the speed that the last three years had come.

We drove home, the boys talking about their racing helmets the whole way. We went immediately to the back yard and pulled out their 4-wheelers. This was it. The beginning of the end. I am just one soccer game and a prom away from college.

And then I heard the words that reminded me that they are still just 3. Lovely, delightful, funny 3.

As I handed the new racing helmet to Nathan, he said "No Mom. I want the Elmo helmet".

~ Mama of racin' boys

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