Carter is constantly wanting to do things himself. Turn the light on or off, flush the toilet, put on his shoes and socks, lock the door, put away his toys (yeah, not arguing that one), etc. Sometimes I'll turn out the light in the bathroom when he's done, and he'll freak out until I turn it back on so he can do it himself. There have been countless times that I've had to shut the door again after I'd already opened it, so he can do it himself. Or put puzzle pieces back in the box, so he can take them out and "set them up." You get the point.
I was discussing Carter's independent streak with my mom yesterday when I had what Oprah calls an "A-Ha Moment."
His independent streak is not just a learning opportunity for him, it's a lesson for me as well. A lesson in patience. I'm always rush rush rushing him to our next task or destination, when the reality is that we're not in a hurry. An extra couple of minutes is not going to make a difference in the grand scheme of things, but it WILL make a difference in his sense of worth and independence. I need to take a breath, sit back, and let him do things on his own without offering help. He needs to learn to ask for help when he needs it, and to be proud when he can accomplish something on his own without Mommy constantly intervening.
So what if it takes him longer, or if he makes a bit of a mess. He can do it himself. He's told me many, many times.
What a lesson.