Mother's Day 2012

I knew it was coming - they all said it would. One day she preferred his company to mine. Then last week, she got a fever, and he was the one available to pick her up from daycare and tend to her. After that, she ran to him with a skinned knee, and asked that he read a book, not me. Specifically, she said that, "Not Mommy."

In the endless nights of infancy, I told myself that this was a phase, that she was needy for me in a very intense way, but that it would end. And truly, that thought did help me to cherish the closeness we had in her first and second year, and not just get through that time, but enjoy it for what it was.

So, now on this Mother's Day 2012, she's a daddy's girl. She's extraordinarily assertive and independent, at just 2 1/2. We noticed this weekend that she can work a zipper...we went camping and she had no problem at all getting out of the tent, and then later, at home, I watched her zip and unzip a little bag as she was playing a game.

The game, incidentally, consisted of her taking a packed lunch (of doughnuts, a quart of chocolate milk, and sandwiches) to the Laurel Island (Laurel Highlands), and after eating, she put the food away and brought out a pretend Maurice Sendak book, which was really a Pac Man instruction manual from M's Nintendo. All direct quotes from Laurel. I played along, but the game was all hers. I love her imagination.

As mothers, we tread a fine line between wanting to be needed and wanting our children to grow up and not need us anymore. I think it must ebb and flow over the years, as they move through developmental phases, and we adjust our parenting.

The feeling is one of excitement and pride and heart-breaking sentimentality, all at once. Worth it, yes, but  a little painful, nonetheless.


Anonymous said...

Happy post-Mother's Day! Love, Mary

Anonymous said...

Lovely, Katy. Thanks for sharing that.