Is there anything worse than watching your own daughter ride her bike out into the middle of a road instead of making the turn? And seeing a pickup truck coming toward her? There's this funny thing one's brain does, that makes the scene look like it's shot with a zoom lens and everything's all flattened onto the same plane. Girl. Bike. Truck.
I had checked for traffic and gone ahead of her. I stopped at the side of the road and turned to watch her follow me. Except she didn't. As I was helping her out of the road, while blowing kisses and bowing gratitude to the driver of the truck (who had seen her coming and slowed to a snail's pace), I realized I had my own bike tucked under my arm. I now understand how people can lift cars.
I hugged her and held her and told her over and over "it's okay, you're okay, it's okay" until she finally asked if we could stop this nonsense and please keep riding.
There's a wide bike lane where we were riding, and we could have just filed into it without waiting for traffic. But while part of me registered that, the other part said "let's just wait a second." And that's what we did.
Maybe the driver of the truck did the same thing.
Call it what you will, we are more guided and protected than we realize. May we all hear what we need to hear. And then may we keep riding.