Doorknob Causes Heart Throbs
Kids outgrow parents in stages, not just when they are eleven going on eighteen. It’s the kind of thing that creeps up little bits at a time. Evidence permeates daily family life. Parenting young children has built-in growth spurts for kids and adults.
My hand was on automatic pilot, reaching and turning the kitchen door knob. As my fingers began to rotate the knob, a pleading wee voice screeched out, “MOMMMMMMMMMMMM. NOOOOOOO! I CAN DO IT!” He was right. My autopilot door opener was in need of retraining. For years I had been assisting him in entering and exiting through doors whose knobs he couldn’t reach. The basic truth now was that he didn’t need me to do that anymore. The heart butterfly began flapping up: glad for him; down: sad for me. Flap, flap, flap. He was my youngest, growing so quickly.
“I am sorry, Darion. I forgot how big you are now. I’ll try to remember from now on that you can do it yourself. You’re such a big boy!” His facial expression conveyed to me that he was pleased to be acknowledged in his taller, more capable state.
There. I covered my tracks, set an example by listening, acknowledging and apologizing. Next step was to mix an emotional salve for my glad/sad flaps. First ingredient: acceptance of the change. Second step: let go. Ahhhhhh, I was ready for the next challenge which would certainly arise sooner than later!