Shoelaces are hard. There is definitely a part of me that wonders why kids’ shoes even have that option. Certainly slip-ons and velcro can do the job until they become teenagers. Nevertheless, we recently bought 4 new pairs of shoes (play shoes and Sunday shoes) for the boys—and all of them have laces.
Simon has been tying his own laces for a while now. He usually wears slip-ons, but at least he can tie shoes if he needs to. Oliver, however, not so much. We got the shoes with the intent to teach him, but for the first few weeks just . . . didn’t.
And then one day after school I noticed his shoe was untied. I offered to tie it. I was almost done when he 1. took my hat and 2. walked away. I was super annoyed and told him I wasn’t tying his shoe again. He’d have to live with it if it came untied. Which, of course, it did before we even left the school grounds. But he was a good sport and lived with it.
We were almost home—just making our way to the last platform to catch the last train that would take us to our apartment—when his shoelace got caught in the escalator. Again, I was super annoyed and while it wasn’t difficult to pull it out and free him, I was less than patient about doing it. “You are learning to tie your shoes and I am never doing it for you again!” was my basic reaction.
So we sat down together and I showed him how to tie his shoes. And then he tied his shoes. And then he did it again. And again. And the whole thing took less than 5 minutes and I felt a little silly for not teaching him earlier. Turns out, even if he’s small, he’s a quick study. And one day he may even be completely independent.