“Just let her go” Scott says when we are at the library Easter event and it’s time for children to all run off and find 2 paper eggs each to bring back. I wanted to run with her, make sure she was alright and didn’t struggle to find some. I imagined her coming back round the corner upset because someone had pushed her or took her eggs. I also thought about the large space that is the library that I was letting her run off into alone. ‘By herself?’ I asked. ‘Yes she’s 7 years old, she will be fine.’ The thought had never crossed my mind that she would just be fine. She is my one and only and always will be and all I’ve ever thought about is to make sure she is ok but it seems now I need to think more about letting her experience life for herself. I’m not talking about letting her walk to the shops alone but maybe letting her run off with a group of other children in a secure environment to find some paper eggs is something she can do on her own.
T can also be very shy around adults at times, we have spoken to her several times about her talking to grown ups and how she needs to answer when they ask her questions and not just say nothing. She has got better recently but because I’m so used to her saying nothing and then there being an incredibly awkward silence while said adult and me both wait for her answer that never comes I do answer for her sometimes. I know I shouldn’t but it’s just easier than creating yet more awkwardness while I try to coax her into answering.
So this happened at the library, she wasn’t answering so I answered for her a couple of times then when the lovely lady from the library left Scott asked me why I was answering for her. I had literally done it on autopilot and until he made me aware I didn’t even know I had done it. So again we spoke to her about answering adults questions and after this she slightly improved.
So today we were on the way to a friend’s house and I reminded her on the way about how she needed to try hard to speak to adults and again she was much better.
It’s like we have both got in this routine of I do everything for her, follow her around if we are somewhere unfamiliar to make sure she’s ok and answer for her when she doesn’t want to.
I know it’s got to stop but when do you start to let go of your baby and teach them to stand on their own two feet? Have I wrapped her up in cotton wool for too long? Just trying to protect her from feeling shy or embarrassed, is it time to step back and just let go??