Parenting happens gradually. So does independence. At least I think so. It feels like yesterday Piper was nursing, attached to my body. Last week she told me she could walk home alone from school. Detached. I walked ten feet behind her, of course, but she wanted to be out of my sight.
She’s becoming more independent. Sometimes I don’t even realize it until I turn around and find her fully dressed and almost ready to walk out the door. Who undressed her? Who picked out her clothes? Who helped her pull that shirt on? Piper. How did that happen? Sometimes it doesn’t.
Independence seems to be two steps forward, one step back. And just because Piper can doesn’t mean she will. And then sometimes she wants to and can’t. She’s still Piper.
This is how our chore chart has changed over the last year of blogging:
The best part? Dad and I are no longer on it. Believe me, we still have plenty of chores. We’re not lazing about on the couch eating grapes while Cinderella and her sister do our bidding, although that would be nice, too.
Sissy and Piper have simply taken on more. Sissy does a couple loads of laundry a week (sort, wash, fold) and then gets to boss Piper around putting it away. They set the dinner table and I don’t have to show them how anymore. They mostly remember their snacks and water bottles on their own. Sometimes I have to remind them but I don’t have to pack them. They clean up their dishes and put them in the dishwasher. They unpack their lunchboxes and wash them. They clean their rooms, reluctantly but independently. I’m not saying they do any of their chores perfectly, but they do them and that’s probably more important than my standards.
My standards have evolved gradually, too. Parenting, as hard as it is, makes me better, too. Who knew that was going to happen? Certainly not me. Whew.