All summer I looked at bicycles for myself. I looked and researched about 2 wheeler bikes with carriers attached to the back for kids. I looked at modified bicycles with a single child’s seat attached to it, or even built onto it. I looked and I looked, but couldn’t find what I really wanted. I read the research about the pros and cons of each type of bicycle and carrier or seat for a child. I even read about people who’d modified wheelbarrows and bicycles into a hybrid that they used.
I wanted something that was comfortable for me to ride. I wanted something that I could attach a child’s carrier/seat to for the two youngest children. I wanted something that would be stable and sturdy even when my balance wasn’t great or when my unstable ankle decided to randomly give out. Something that allowed me to be active with the kids the way I wanted to be but couldn’t because of increased complications from my club foot. Canadian Tire had a sale, I bought an adult trike for myself. It’s a rich red and I loved it. I knew it’d be different than a two wheeler so to practice and get a feel for riding it, I rode it to the Y with Mr. C. I listened as two adult male strangers decided they needed to make fun of me for riding it. I became embarrassed. I didn’t really want to ride it for a few weeks after that. I didn’t want to deal with stares and comments as if these strangers had a right to judge my attempts at being active with my child. As if my body and my choices that certainly weren’t hurting anyone were something they had a right to speak about.
But then I thought about how I wouldn’t stand for someone making fun of my children or my niece for needing something a bit different than the typical “status quo” bike in order to be safe while having fun so why would I let someone stop me? If I let strangers stop me what was the hidden message I was sending to the wee ones in my life? I was telling them with my actions to fade into the background instead of enjoying their lives on their terms. I was telling them that some random stranger’s opinions matter more than their right to the accommodations they need to actively participate with their family. That is NOT what I want to teach any of them!
So I set to work to build something for the kids that they could sit safely in that could be attached to my bike because darn it I wasn’t going to fade into the background of my own life! I researched more as I went and the final results of what I built are below:
All closed up for if I don’t have the wee ones (or as they get bigger and can ride their own bikes) perfect for groceries or day trip supplies such as a picnic:
Opened up into a seat:
Fully opened with the pillows I made as well so they’re comfy when they sit in it:
One of the great parts to it is that I made it a few inches higher than their heads so the rain cover from the single stroller fits over it perfectly!
Now I’m off with the wee ones for a ride to the park 😀