I have been in no big rush to potty train our daughter. I actually have been pretty much dragging my feet when it comes to getting her out of diapers. There are many reasons that I have not pressed the issue, for one I did not want to put too much pressure on her or us. I know that she will learn in her own time & she is getting there slowly, but surely. Changing diapers may not be my favorite part of motherhood, but I am not so eager to give it up.
The speed in which our daughter is growing up is anxiety inducing. Every time I turn around she is learning something new, outgrowing her clothes and becoming less reliant on us. Before I have barely adjusted to one stage in her life, she is on to the next. She is beginning to exercise her independence. The sound of the phrase, “I do it myself” echoes through our house several times a day.
Mommy can no longer put her in her car seat. She doesn’t need me to pour her a cup of juice anymore. The list of things that she needs me for are diminishing.
Recently she has been very particular about what she wears. Getting her dressed in the morning is a battle of wills. I have started to let her pick out her own outfits. Whatever she chooses is fine with me as long as it is weather appropriate.
Over the weekend we had one of our usual power struggles. Clad in nothing but a diaper I chased my daughter through the house trying to get her dressed for the day. The outfit I picked out was all wrong, so of course she wanted to pick it out herself. She burrowed through her dresser and pulled out an adorable long sleeve shirt with an owl on it & a glittery black tutu. As I reached to take the shirt from her to get her dressed, I heard that oh so familiar phrase. “Mai can do it. I do it myself.” I released the shirt and took a step back. I would let her try it & was ready to step in whenever she needed help, but she never needed any help. I stood there and watched as my little girl wrestled & struggled with pulling the shirt over her head and searched with her arms for the sleeves. She was persistent and determined. To my surprise she managed to get her shirt on. Without hesitating she reached for her skirt and pulled it on with more ease. She beamed with pride after she was done. I was beaming as well. I quickly picked up my daughter & brought her outside to tell her daddy what she had just accomplished. I couldn’t have been more proud. Along with that pride brought the realization that she really was not a baby anymore.
The infant stage went by in a blink & now I am watching as my daughter no longer resembles a toddler as much as she does a little girl. When did this happen? I should be happy. Her newly found independence takes a lot of pressure off me & my husband. I should be proud & I am, but I can’t help feeling a little weepy as I look behind me and see the days, months & years pass by. It is strange to think that by tomorrow even today will be a memory. Life with a toddler moves at warp speed & sometimes it is hard to keep up. I am trying my best though. I am not quite ready to move onto that next stage yet, but I already know that I cannot keep her in diapers forever.