Where Did My Baby Go?

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My almost eight-year-old has transformed from an “I need my mommy for everything” person to an “it’s ok mom, I can do it myself” person, and I’m not sure how I feel about it.

Where did my baby go?

When I say she doesn’t need me for much, I mean she will go in the refrigerator and make her own snacks; she takes her medicine on her own (with my supervision), and when it’s time for bed, she kisses me good night as if I’m not going to still come to tuck her in and read a story.

No one warned me this happens at eight. I needed a warning! This has made school drop off and pickups much easier since she can get herself in and out of the car. If I’m a bit sluggish in the morning, she will make herself a bowl of cereal until I can get my act together. Still, my baby is no longer a baby. 

As much as I want to tell her that I still want to do these things, I don’t. I just give her the reassurance that if she needs me, I am here to help her.

These are things that she should be doing on her own, and I would not want to hinder her independence. In an effort to make things easy for her, I make sure all of the easy-to-grab snack items are easily visible to her inside of the refrigerator and on the pantry shelves. She even pops her own popcorn! Before bed, she picks her school clothes for the next day and does not like for me to intervene, even when her color blocking is a bit off.

With this new show of independence, I am trying to make sure she is also being more responsible for her things around the house. (When does the independence for picking up toys and crafts kick in? That is still a struggle!) Her current chores are to pick up after herself (easier said than done), wipe down her bathroom counter, and empty the trash from the smaller cans into the big one. She has expressed interest in learning to clean the dishes, so we may add that soon.

I know that this is all a part of them growing up, but it seems to happen so fast. This mama was not ready!

Were you ready when your child made this transition?

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