Journeys In Motherhood

“I Got It Mom!” : Welcoming Your Child’s Independence

There are times as parents where we know our children may need a helping hand of assistance, and there are times where our children let us know that they can handle certain matters on their own. Sometimes our children take the bold courage in letting us know politely that they want to independently be assertive in handling things on their own, and sometimes they give us a side look of annoyance that says,” I got it Mom!” I will admittedly say that I’ve had mixed feelings during this stage with each of my children in watching them graduate gracefully in different stages in their lives in navigating through the world. Later, I smiled warmly from the inside in remembering on the opposite end of the spectrum with my own parents in wanting to show that I’ve applied the lessons they’ve taught me, used a bit of old common sense, and safely acted on discernment with things turning out better than they thought I could’ve handled it.

“Who Got Net? “

My son and I enjoy our Saturday outings to the gym, picking up a few grocery items, and cleaning up the car. We usually stop by the gym before taking on the later tasks of the day. I was super excited to take Pierce on a recent Saturday to the gym since now turning a teen allowed him to graduate out of the kiddie play area. He could finally have access to using the basketball court, pool, and other areas independently. My son was unaware of this small stepping stone in transitioning to “big boy” status at the gym, so when I asked him before we left home to grab a basketball he shrugged it off. However, he happily learned that he didn’t have to go to the kiddie area at the gym any longer when we arrived, and he went straight for the court. The balls were bouncing, and a serious game was about to start. I could see that he wanted to join in the game, but he didn’t have a ball to even ask, ” Who got net? ” All gym patrons must bring their own ball, but my son didn’t have one. I would’ve loved having my son join me on the walking track, but I knew his eyes were locked into seeing how he could join in the game to play.

No Helicopter Mom!

I try my best to not be the “Helicopter Mom” hovering over my children watching their every move. The way the track is surrounded over top of the basketball court though, you didn’t have to be a “Helicopter Mom” to see the ongoing of activities on the basketball court. I could see the look on my son’s face in trying to figure out the social boundaries in watching the other players intensely play not wanting to distract the game. I asked my son if he wanted me to ask one of the older gentlemen on the court if he could play with one of the loose basketballs or ask one of the gym employees if they had an extra ball that he could play with since it was his first time being in the area alone. He said, ” I got it Mom.” It took all of me to not see if “Mommy” could just help out her son in protecting his feelings just in case his request was rejected. I know my son has matured, but I still fight at times seeing him as the little boy learning unsuccessfully at times the do’s and don’ts of boundaries. I kept my word to him, and I backed off to finish my miles on the track. It’s was only five minutes after our discussion, and I saw my son playing basketball laughing with the other fellas on the court.

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My favorite throwback of my son and I leaving the basketball court. I was the coach, and he was my most passionate players.

Trust In What You Instill

I smiled looking down below from the track overlooking the court. There’s an ” aha moment” that all moms get in knowing that their once little one is growing up. Our children gradually grow independently from a toddler learning how to brush their teeth, a child deciding to pick out their own clothes, taking the initiative to clean without our push to do so, positively handling conflict alone with their peers, or cranking up the keys to the car in learning how to drive as teens. It may not look like it sometimes, but our children soak up in observation all that we do and say. They will also grow through development in discovering their own instinct, personalities, boundaries, and adjustments from life’s experiences. Our children subconsciously and sometimes purposefully apply what we train and instill in them. They also will grow in wanting to succeed or even fail on their own independently. I was proud of my son that day, and I have witnessed his sisters take similar steps in being able to hold down their own. I will say this, rather they have it or not as their mom I will be there by their side lending a hand if need be with a love that never waver in support.

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