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Don’t Laugh at Me I’m Still Learning

A long time ago my nephew was a young adolescent doing what all nearly teenage boys do … experiment with danger and risk. In his case that meant being a skater at the local skate park. Corralled in a safe community, close to ambulance, fire departments, and community leaders it was quite a safe location but to them it was a dangerous adventure.

One of his young friends was an exceptional scooter “rider”? (I am old, I don’t know what you call a boy on a scooter. I know what they called boys on scooters and that is not fit for print!) One of my nephew’s friends, the scooter kid, asked to borrow a skate board. Bravely, he climbed to the top of the half-pipe, grinning from ear-to-ear and expressing complete confidence in his skills and ability. He then dropped into the half-pipe, fell, and face-planted sliding down the ramp covering it in blood.

His arm had a ramp rash from the wrist to the elbow and dripping blood. He wasn’t “hurt” so much as his pride. All of his friends ran to his “aid” laughing and pointing. Between tears he made a statement that changed my life:

“Don’t laugh at me. I’m still learning.”

Inspiration comes from everywhere and whenever I think of the risk of failing and being laughed at and ostracized I look back and remember his brave statement.

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