Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Doing it "all by her own"

Julia announced a little too late that she wanted to make her own bed one day.  I'd already done it since I'm efficient in the mornings like that.  She volunteered, "maybe I can do it all by my own the next day."  There was a bit of a cry in her voice.

She's almost five, but there's still a hearty amount of crying and fighting back tears when mommy forgets to let her push the garage door opener button or buckle her own seatbelt.  Any infringement of the BIG girl's independence is met with resistance. I find myself wishing she'd find a way to control herself.  I want her to realize that life is long and she'll have a whole new day to zip her zipper "all by her own" another time.  In some small way, I want her to grow up.

Then I remembered to ask if she wanted to make her own bed.  "Yes, yes, yes!" she exclaimed already running to her room.  A few minutes later she returned.  "I got the blanket part, but the pillows are giving me trouble.  Will you help me?" she wants to know.

I straightened her pillows and admonished them for misbehaving. I thought about my future self that will someday have to fight the real big girl to make her own bed.

Right now I have a sensitive child that relishes any chance to help.  She'll pick up her toys so I can vacuum or deliver a milk jug to the recycling bin.  After each task she returns, bursting with pride to ask, "Is there anything else I can do?"

Someday very soon I know I'm going to miss this.