There is some sort of quiet revolution happening… a revolution of responsibility, or perhaps it is initiative. That toothbrush made it’s way to the recharger with absolutely no input from me. Helena identified the problem, worked out the solution and took the initiative in solving it. That has been happening a bit recently. She makes dinner on Friday nights and this is not a debated thing but a fact that requires only consultation on what there is to cook (she made the timetable). I ask if there is anything she wants when I go shopping, which we are doing every two weeks or longer if I can stretch it out. She offered to hang that washing out as I was busy and she knew we had to be somewhere by a certain time. The catering is a craft project she initiated for making our meetings easier, more fun. What you can’t see is that we are not arguing as much, cleaning her desk on a Sunday is also now a fact. She’s out there right now with a talking book just doing it. She even gets up and goes to the toilet after she has gone to bed with out calling out and asking permission (a weird thing in her own head, as why would I say no?). She gets her own breakfast….. I suspect that all this is just developmentally appropriate and that prior to this I was banging my head against a not yet ready brain. I am sure that even if I had not provided my ideas of what I wanted her to be responsible for she would have found contributing tasks herself when she was developmentally ready as she doesn’t like unfairness and I am included in this. She says “Mummy you shouldn’t be doing everything as that isn’t fair.” Sometimes when Helena felt her life was unfair and she had too many jobs I would dictate what I was doing, for example- I am just collecting all our washing, now I am putting all the stuff on the benches away, I’ve just noticed something got split in the cupboard so I am sorting that out, now I am going to hang out the washing, I will clean the sink in the bathroom then I will start to think about lunch etc.. I hear Michelle Shocked in my head and the lyric “I sound like a housewife.” It is so hard not to keep one’s own baggage out of any occasion. I wonder if I will still have to do this? Maybe what I do is less invisible now she is doing invisible stuff too. It is so much easier when we are all working to the same goal, and communicate, with identifying our feelings vs facts. Being cooperative. I heard her tell a friend that the people who work for Wallace and Grommit all own it and make all the decisions. Am I developmentally ready for a less authoritative model? I sure know I still need to work on communicating my goals.
“I’m getting dressed and going to the toilet, I’ve finished tidying up so I’m going out to play with (our 5 year old neighbor). I don’t need anymore story.” Her new developments are even in her tone of voice, one of pride, authority, knowledge and power.