Independence At My Expense

Micah slept in, so I drove him to school. When I pulled up in front of the building, he opened his door and got out. He put on his backpack and grabbed his lunch box. He motioned for me to stay right where I was, closed his door, and walked up the sidewalk. I opened my door to get out and he turned around, pointed for me to get right back in the driver's seat, and yelled his displeasure. I complied. I waited until he was waiting to get buzzed in before I headed up the walk to sign  him in. He was quite angered that I had the nerve to wait on the door with him.

I have learned to wait until he's in the school and heading down the hall to his classroom before I go to the office. To anyone who would watch our little drama play out, it looks very much like Micah is completely and totally in charge of me, and I have completely and totally lost all my parenting rights.

Welcome to our world. While it's frustrating here on occasion, it's a happy place, even if it is chaos at any given time.

Clearly, Micah is craving independence. He lacks the words to simply say, "Mom, I can go in alone. You don't need to walk with me." And while I explain to him that I need to go sign him in at the office, he also lacks the ability to understand what those words mean. All he knows is that I'm trying to baby him when he's clearly got this covered.

How does one ask for independence when one is nonverbal? And how can I not give him every bit of independence that he wants, when he knows he's incredibly dependent on me for so many things? The boy can't do zippers or buttons or snaps. We buy him rib waist jeans, elastic waist shorts, and velcro shoes. He can't cut his food. He can't blow his nose. He can't pour his own milk without spilling it more often than not, and thankfully he asks for help instead of pouring gallon after gallon on the floor. He can't operate the microwave, he can't brush his teeth (and actually get them clean), he can't even serve himself dinner without spilling half of what he wanted between the bowl and his plate.

So I don't really care if people judge me for being a pushover mom and allowing my elementary aged son to call the shots on occasion. If he yells at me to stay in the van, I'll stay. It just seems the least that I can do for him.

1 comment:

Gina said...

I love his independence. And it would be hilarious to be a fly on the wall, watching it all play out.