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Piece By Piece: Sports Spur Growth of All Kinds

We all marveled when Peter took to skiing without blinking an eye this past winter, so I am not sure why I was surprised when he began riding a friend’s scooter with relative ease.

This fall, all three of my children were clamoring to try new outdoor sports. Charlotte, 13, had outgrown her childhood bicycle and wanted to really try riding. Peter was getting fancy with our friend Cait's scooter, and Kit, 8, decided she wanted to try roller skating. I had visions of my own childhood with skates clattering on the cement sidewalks and my bicycle meaning almost as much as my first car.

Bill and I decided they were old enough to understand the concept of early Christmas presents, so we turned the recent beautiful fall weekend into a Christmas shopping spree. When we left Toys 'R' Us, everyone had a new set of wheels.

All three children are enjoying their new outdoor activities, although Kit is working harder than the others, because she had not been practicing already. Peter is fully outfitted with arm pads and knee pads as well as his safety helmet. He is riding his scooter with speed and making turns like any of the other boys in the neighborhood. It amazes me to watch as he coordinates the movements of balancing one foot on the board and picking up speed with the other, all while holding onto the stick he uses to steer.

As a toddler, Peter could not coordinate walking across a room with an obstacle or two. He had physical therapy and occupational therapy to help him learn how to move his body in ways most of us just do each day. We celebrated when he learned to catch a ball, walk along a bridge and navigate an obstacle course. Now, he is trying sports I would have never even imagined possible.

Back in those days, the therapists told me that as Peter improved his physical well being, he would be able to organize his thoughts and life more as well. It is always amazing to watch how Peter finds his own way to piece things together.

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