The 'Girls' Helmet and Zach's First Bike Ride

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Jono is a keen cyclist. Not quite enough to wear lycra, although I sense it is coming in the future. He's been talking about taking Zach out on his bike ever since our little boy was born, and after a few suggestions of putting him in my basket he accepted that we would have to wait until he was strong enough to go on the back of a bike. Finally his dreams became a reality, and Zach was kindly bought a bike seat for his first birthday.

We went out a few days before our first cycle to get him a helmet. We arrived at the bike shop and I immediately started shrieking "oh my gosh, we need to get him that one, it has BEES on it!!" before calming down and sensibly asking which one would be the right size for our boy. It turned out that the only one small enough for Zach's little head was indeed the yellow helmet with the bees on, but we were then informed that it was actually just "for girls".

"But it's yellow" I responded. It isn't exactly pink and glittery, with hearts and sequins. It's yellow with bees and honeycomb, and yes a few flowers too. Perfect for a toddler, regardless of their gender, in my opinion. It hadn't even crossed my mind that it might be "for girls", and I wasn't going to let that stop us buying it. After quickly telling Zach "don't you listen to him, you can like bees if you want to" loud enough for the sales assistant to hear me, we purchased the girls helmet for our boy. 

And so, a few days later we went on our first family bike ride. Zach loved it! He looked so cute in his helmet, and so proud to be sitting in his bike seat. As we expected he spent the entire journey staring at the ground, but you could tell he was enjoying every second. I on the other hand hadn't cycled for almost two years and thought I was going to die!

We have big plans to do lots of cycling over the summer, so I'm sure that Zach will be getting lots of use out of his 'girls' helmet. We can't wait to get out in the countryside, and maybe take a picnic in my basket. I just hope that the man in the bike shop stops gender stereotyping children's helmets, and that my fitness improves so that my thighs won't feel like they're on fire!

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