I was a Nadia Comaneci wanna-be of the nth degree. My sister could play "Nadia's Theme" on the piano - which I requested endlessly - and I wanted to be her. She was the darling of the Montreal Olympics that year and all the girls in my posse dreamed of perfect 10s in our gymnastics future.
Other girls had more talent than little ol' me, but that didn't stop me from dreaming of future Olympic gold. To me, it seemed like I was the only girl in the neighbourhood that didn't take official gymnastic lessons, so I used to force them to teach me everything they learned, and beg for all riveting details of who could do what, the equipment layout, how they chalked the hands, and how to solve the age-old issue of spandex wedgies (best advice: don't do it in front of the judges, just work through it).
We would design our Olympic outfits, hair styles, and practice our podium stances. Yup, we were going for gold. I actually miss the never ending Olympic passion felt as a child but somehow I find it each time the heart-swelling opening ceremony of any Olympic games is on tv. When Canada comes trooping in, my eyes never fail to well up.
That was many moons ago but the passion never died. I'll watch gymnastics any chance I get. So you can imagine my joy when I discovered our recreation department had affordable gymnastics classes for the wee ones.
Bumper started in the 6-18mth old class and much to my joy: she loved it. We now have advanced to the 2-3 year old class and by far her favourite piece of equipment is the trampoline, with the horizontal bars, and vault further behind. I love that she enjoys it as much as I did when I was a kid. Of course, she's way more flexible and dare devil than her ol' mom and that just makes me beam even more.
I'll never push her into advancing into more structured gymnastic lessons because the passion needs to be there. For now, playing with the equipment and watching her bounce with abandon on the trampoline is enough.
But I'd be lying if I didn't admit that I dream that the passion is in her heart and that maybe she can score that Wheaties box cover that her mom didn't get.
This post is part of the today's Parent Bloggers Network Blog Blast that focuses on activities you do with your child that you did as a kid. The sponsor is Highlights magazine who is celebrating their 60th Anniversary (60! woah - lookin' good) and has a new magazine for the 2-6 age set called High Five. Join in the blast for a chance to will a cool prize.