Parenting-what an enigma it is. It’s late in the evening and the (relative!) peace and quiet of our countryside abode is shattered by the excited cries of a three-year old.
“I have to go wee-wee!”
This is I imagine, a pretty common refrain in households with small kids. I stop preparing the lunch boxes for the next morning and follow our youngest girl into the downstairs bathroom . There she is sitting up on the seat, looking up at me. Just as I am about to enquire as to whether or not she requires my services, she stops me and says:
“I don’t need you Mama. You can go”.
And just like that I am dismissed. I’m not going to lie, it was kind of devastating. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve muttered under my breath how sick and tired I was of cleaning tiny arses but to hear that she didn’t need me was like a karate kick to the heart.
This week she started pre-school. For the last few months, the first words out of her mouth have been “Can I go to school today?” and when I finally answered her in the affirmative she was gushing in her gratitude. (In my head I was thinking you better remember this feeling for the next 15 years, kiddo!!) So off she went, as proud as punch of herself with her school bag on her back and not a backwards glance. Our youngest girl, our baby, possibly our last child. Off without a care in the world and ready to take no prisoners like the fierce little lady she is.
Such is the parenting enigma! Parenting is such a funny old thing. You spend what seems like forever willing your child to be able to rely on you less, but then when they start to spread their wings and fly, you can’t help but feel a little rejected. It’s almost enough to make me want to go again. ALMOST!