Having an independent child has both its pros and cons. Naturally, the benefits of a child feeding themselves and dressing themselves is fabulous but it also means getting them to hold your hand whilst walking can be a battle. Generally, we are past the battle of wills with independence that happens around 2/3 years old.
Something shocked me today, Jenson, for about 6 months has been able to toilet himself and wipe and clean up afterwards. Something I am very proud of him for, especially with the academic year approaching and it is an expectation that children can do this and manage this by the time they start primary school. Earlier, however, the words “I don’t need you Mummy” rang through my ears like a knife through my heart. He goes up to the toilet and does all by himself but he is right, he doesn’t need me. Not like he use to, he is so independent, he even tries to do his breakfast with cereal and milk, he dresses and undresses, brushes his teeth himself and so many other things. He plays independently too now and his imagination is amazing.
Of course the only time Jenson needs me most is when he is preparing for preschool, he is a nightmare at dressing himself and he is so slow. The fact that preschool have had dress up this week has made my life so much easier! He loves dressing as a policeman!
This independence comes hand in hand with laziness. It drives me mad! He reverts to being unable to feed himself, tonight he went to bed without his dinner, without dinner he doesn’t get pudding and he refused to feed himself, I refused to feed him. He is 4 years old and basically he was being lazy and wanting to watch the TV so he was sulking. The TV was off therefore he had no distractions and he didn’t want to do it himself, this is the first time he has gone to bed without dinner but he needed some tough love and I wasn’t going to feed him whilst breastfeeding Emeline and trying to eat my own food but also, I couldn’t really manage it with Emeline on my lap.