Letter from the Editor: Enjoying some real dad and son time

Callendar Park is a great venue for cycling
Callendar Park is a great venue for cycling

Regular readers of the column will the aware of the joy my son brings to my life ... and the challenging behaviour he displays which leaves my nerves jangling and my head about to explode.

To be fair, it’s a experience most parents will be familiar with to some degree but, when you have a child with learning difficulties, you’re entering a whole new stratosphere.

The difficult days can be VERY difficult, however, on he flipside, the rewards you get when the ‘real Calum’ shows himself are even more pronounced

The difficult days can be VERY difficult, however, on he flipside, the rewards you get when the ‘real Calum’ shows himself are even more pronounced.

This week provided a perfect example.

For years I’ve been trying to teach him to ride a bike but he’s a stubborn wee boy - I think he takes it from his mum - and point blank refuses my offers of help.

Hence, he either scoots along Flintstones-fashion using his feet to propel him or pedals backwards until the chain falls off (and THEN he wants my help).

But, on Saturday, he decided he was going to do it properly ... and just took off.

By Tuesday, we’d bought a new bike, lights, water bottle and cycle rack for the car, and were heading off to Callendar Park.

As we laughed till our sides hurt and I struggled to catch up with help as he raced along - yelping with delight as he hurtled over the speed bumps - it suddenly struck me that this was probably the first time in all Calum’s nine years that we really enjoyed time together like a ‘normal’ father and son.

My heart swells with pride just typing that last sentence ... and I can’t wait to head down to the park again.