Doodle is becoming quite the independent little person. Twice this weekend she reminded me just how much she's doing on her own.
Saturday we were at the Pride gathering at Willow Park. She wanted to play on the playground equipment, so for a while J or I stood nearby and watched while she navigated the stairs, slides, etc. After a few times back and forth between the picnic tables and the playground, she just took off by herself without any insistence that a parent follow.
So we stood and watched.
She climbed the stairs to the big slide. She slid. She ran around. She watched bigger kids do bigger kid things. She climbed the stairs again. She even tried climbing a ladder (this is when J went to spot her - it was a little high and she has less practice at ladders than at stairs). She did fine at all of it. The big kids were nice and patient while she slowly made her way to the top of the slide stairs. And she had fun. I didn't need to be there. In fact, she played for probably 15 minutes before even looking for J or myself.
It was eye-opening for me. She didn't NEED me. And she was perfectly fine and safe without a hovering mom to remind her to watch out for the next kid to come down the slide or to go around the kids on swings. She KNOWS that stuff. I should just let her be more often.
Come Sunday Doodle and I were playing in the front yard, running around and digging up weeds in the flowerbed. She asked for help climbing the little tree in our yard, so I helped her get up on the low branches. She swung around and got herself situated, sitting nice and stable between a few branches.
She turned to me and ordered "Go garden," pointing at the flowerbeds.
I looked at her, confused. "What, Doodle?"
"Go garden. No help."
She didn't want me hovering, spotting her and staying close just in case. She was fine, and told me as much. So I agreed, and went about 12 feet away where I continued weeding while she happily sat in the tree, picking at buds and watching the world. She didn't need me.
She doesn't always need me anymore. I'm still getting used to that idea.