This week Arthur moved up into Rainbow Room at nursery. – an insignificant little move next door, barely a stride past his old room.
But it made my heart break just a little bit. It didn’t happen when he moved from the baby room to the toddler one, but this feels bigger. Like he’s really becoming a little boy and there’s nothing I can do about it. He’s been at nursery since he was a year and really loves it – there’s honestly never been a day when he’s been sad or I have to go and pick him up (unless he’s ill of course).
I’m so thankful for this because it does make life easier and I don’t know what I would have done about work if he hadn’t been happy. But when I dropped him off in his new room and he peered in and saw all the ‘big’ boys and girls there was a moment when he clung to my hand for a little longer and had a little look of uncertainty in his eyes. I took him in and handed him over but for a moment I wanted to pick him up and take him home – or even just back to his old room.
By the end of the day he’d made googly-eyed Easter chicks, chocolate bird’s nests and had a thoroughly lovely time. He chatted about his day and mentioned a few new names I’d not heard before. It’s my issue and I really don’t want to be one of those mother’s who smothers their child and stops them doing things for their own benefit.
I guess it made me think they’ll be loads of moments like this through our journey together. Times when I just want to do things for him, wrap him in cotton wool and keep him safe. Kids can be brutal and I’m sure they’ll be times when I have to resist the urge to go into school and reprimand some little tike for upsetting my boy. It’s that dichotomy of wanting to mother them and knowing you have to gradually let them go – not totally, just enough to know they can.
I read a very interesting article recently – ‘Please don’t help me child’ it talked about how as a mother, she often leaves her child to make it to the top of the slide on their own, doesn’t always pick them up when they fall and sometimes leaves them to cry with frustration when they’re trying to work something out. Some of the parents who watched this tutted and even went to help her child.
She talked about how she fights her maternal urge to run over and do the task in question, to ‘make it better’. She does this because in life you have to stand alone sometimes, achieve things for yourself and not rely on others. It promotes independence, confidence in your own ability.
When I dropped Arthur off in Rainbow room he was fine, I knew he would be and in the scheme of things it’s not particularly massive but it made me realise how easy it is try to make everything ok and is this really the best thing to do.
I might wait until he’s three and a big boy before I decide.