The Dirt Bike This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This work has won the Teen Ink contest in its category.

     This is the story of a time I went to my dad for help because he seemed to be the only person who believed in me.

My friend Brett had just gotten a dirt bike and a lot of other kids in my neighborhood knew how to ride. I wanted to also, but I didn’t even know the difference between the clutch and the front brake. All the guys told me I couldn’t do it because I was a girl. I was determined to prove them wrong, so Brett let me try his bike. I wasn’t on for one minute before I fell off. He came over to see if I were okay, but then started laughing. I felt like running somewhere I wouldn’t be laughed at, but slowly my confidence returned and I got back on the bike. As soon as it started to move, I got nervous and once again lost my nerve.

That night I told my dad the whole story about how I wanted to be as good as the guys and how I had embarrassed myself. He asked how much I really wanted to learn and I told him I had wanted to ride for a year, that it was everything I dreamed about.

A few days later my dad told me he’d found a nice bike for a reasonable price. He brought it home and that was when I became the laughing stock of the neighborhood. All the guys thought it was a joke that I actually wanted to learn how to ride and I became known as a wannabe.

We took it one step at a time. My dad spent four long weeks teaching me everything I needed to know about the bike and the basics of riding. No one truly believed I could learn to ride except my dad. Day after day and night after night he worked with me, and I began to progress. I was so thankful. It meant so much that he would take time from his busy schedule to help me fulfill this dream.

Each ride on my dirt bike, I got a little better, and finally I was ready for my first time on the trails. At first I couldn’t keep up and the boys had to wait for me. My bike constantly stalled and got stuck in the muddy creeks.

Every time I came back, I would cry because I was so teased, and every time I cried my dad was there to put his arms around me. He would tell me not to listen to them and that with more practice, I would be as good, or better, than them. The very next day I would get back on my bike and he would coach me through the problem I was having.

Things eventually got easier, as if I could ride with my eyes closed. Every time I rode on the trails I got a little better and the guys didn’t have to wait for me. I still am made fun of, not because I’m an amateur or not good, but instead because they felt threatened that a girl can do what they did.

I cannot even remember how many nights I spent crying when I had lost my confidence because of those boys. Every time I needed a shoulder to cry on, my dad was there. He never let me give up and always had faith in me, even if I couldn’t do something right.

My dad was a huge help that summer and taught me so much that will stay with me for the rest of my life, including that I shouldn’t let others put me down. I also learned that I can do anything with enough determination and practice, but I never would have achieved my dream of learning how to ride a dirt bike without my dad.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

This work has won the Teen Ink contest in its category. This piece won the July 2006 Teen Ink Nonfiction Contest.

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Lily">This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Jan. 11 at 3:46 am
i love this so much!
kurtis said...
Aug. 31, 2017 at 11:53 pm
Cute story my 5 yr old boy fell asleep tonight as i read it to him thank you . Dad's are a give part of life and I'm trying the best i can as your dad to you . : )
EternalLove said...
Oct. 25, 2010 at 12:38 pm
wow! wait to go! thats so inspiring! :D
DanceAway This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 8, 2010 at 3:19 pm
This is a really good piece. :) good job.
Bethani said...
Apr. 29, 2010 at 6:27 pm
Nice! You're a great worker! Keep it up!
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