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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A Glimpse of Independence

The kids and I took a road trip this past weekend. We were eating dinner at a restaurant and of course one kid has to go to the bathroom but the other one doesn't.

When I've been in this situation before I always pause momentarily and wonder what other parents do when they are by themselves with more than one kid.

Do I gather everyone up from the table and we all trudge to the bathroom together? Do I trust one kid to go to the bathroom alone?

Depending on the location and situation I've been letting Kayla go to the bathroom by herself. We were at Bob Evans, so it's a small restaurant with the bathroom easily accessible and viewable. If we were at a larger, more crowded restaurant like Olive Garden or Outback I would walk to the bathroom with Kayla and make Lucas come with us.

So Kayla went to the bathroom and I kept my eye on the door. Just when I thought she was taking too long I stood up to go check on her...and then the bathroom door opened and she walked back to our table. My big, independent girl...trust her...I tell myself. Give her some space.

As we were finishing our dinner it was Lucas's turn to need the bathroom. Of course Kayla didn't want to get up and go in the bathroom. Do I trust her at the table by herself? Do I trust her not to get in to any mischief?

I walked with Lucas to the bathroom, but stood outside the door, where I could peek around the corner and keep an eye on our booth in the middle of the room.

I opened up the bathroom door to see if Lucas needed any help at the sink and that's when I heard Kayla's voice. I couldn't hear what she was saying but wondered what she was doing and who she was talking to.

I peeked around the corner and that's when I saw her. She was at the counter holding her cup up and this time I heard her clearly, "I have a refill please?"

She had chocolate milk, a rare treat, and decided to help herself to some more by asking anyone behind the counter for a refill.

I had to smile. She knows we don't usually get them a refill on drinks. I don't know if she decided to go to the counter specifically because I was gone and she wanted to get a refill before I could say no, or if she just finished her milk and wanted more and took it upon herself to get more.

Either way, I loved being on the sidelines and watching her be independent...going after what she wanted...with confidence and independence...even if it was just chocolate milk.

And yes, the waitress did bring her a refill.

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Crystal Rhew Staley said...

How exciting and scary all at the same time. I'm sure it's hard when to know to let go a bit! I also wanted to sya that I have really enjoyed reading your blog and it has really helped me with coming to terms with my son's Down syndrome diagnosis. Reading about older kids really helped me in the beginning (my son is 8 months old now) and I am in a much better place. So thanks for that. I look forward to reading more about your awesome family!


I Just Love You said...

yay! that is so cool!

Nan said...

So much fun to watch them grow and make their OWN decisions about what they want! Next step: they take too long in the bathroom and you go in to see what's up and find them texting a friend. Oh yea!

Becca said...

This is so great! Love SO MUCH that she asked for a refill! Too funny, though - I was writing about Samantha's independence in public restrooms on my blog today, too. Must be in the air... :-)

Michelle said...


Stephanie said...

Hooray for Kayla! That had to be a great moment and feeling.

Anonymous said...

it is called trusting and watching from the sidelines!! love mom

ahoy.jenni said...

Great news...I think it's the age. My Matilda is also initiating more independent moments. It's just makes me glow when I witness these moments!

ahoy.jenni said...

Great news...I think it's the age. My Matilda is also initiating more independent moments. It's just makes me glow when I witness these moments!