Jeanean Thomas tried to encourage her daughter, Peyton, when the 6-year-old expressed she wanted to skateboard, but Peyton feared the sport was “just for boys.”
When Jeanean and Peyton arrived at the skate park, the mother claimed the sight nearly scared Peyton away from achieving her goal.
It was full of teenage boys who were smoking and swearing.
But one boy in the group did something so generous it completely changed the Ontario mom's perspective and made Peyton's dream a little less daunting.
In a post on Twitter, Thomas thanked the teen, writing,
Dear teenage boy at skate park: You're probably about 15 years old, so I don't expect you to be very mature or for you to want a little girl on your skate ramp for that matter. What you don't know is that my daughter has been wanting to skateboard for months. I actually had to convince her that skateboarding wasn't for just for boys. So when we walked up to the skate park and saw that it was full of teenage boys who were smoking and swearing, she immediately wanted to turn around and go home. I secretly wanted to go too because I didn't want to have to put on my mom voice and exchange words with you. I also didn't want my daughter to feel like she had to be scared of anyone, or that she wasn't entitled to that skate park just as much as you were. So when she said 'Mom it's full of older boys,' I calmly said, 'So what, they don't own the skate park.' She proceeded to go down the ramp in spite of you and your friends flying past her and grinding rails beside her. She only had two or three runs in before you approached her and said 'Hey excuse me…' I immediately prepare to deliver my 'She's allowed to use this park just as much as you guys' speech when I heard you say '[Your] feet are wrong. Can I help you?' You proceeded to spend almost an hour with my daughter showing her how to balance and steer, and she listened to you; A feat not attained by most adults! You held her hand and helped her get up when she fell down and I even heard you tell her to stay away from the rails so that she wouldn't get hurt. I want you to know that I am proud that you are a part of my community, and I want to thank you for being kind to my daughter, even though your friends made fun of you for it. She left with a sense of pride and with the confidence that she can do anything, because of you.
In an interview with CBC News, the mother-of-one insisted her bias was significantly challenged by the selfless behavior of the skater.
Think about that group of teens on the corner that [parents] might think are troublesome and just remember that they're probably good kids.
With plenty of confidence and a bit of technique learned from her skate park encounter, Peyton reportedly skates all the time.
Citations: 'Thanks for teaching my daughter even though your friends teased you': Mom writes touching letter to teen boy who stopped at skatepark to help 6-year-old (Daily Mail), Cambridge, Ont. teen boy thanked for helping girl, 6, learn to skateboard (CBC News)