I Don't Rescue Her. Not Yet, Anyway

As my infant rolled on the floor, desperate to reach her toy, she looked up at me with an expression that read, “A little help here?” But, knowing she must learn to crawl, I didn’t rescue her. Not yet, anyway.

I let her struggle and fuss, and I fought every urge to come to her aid, give her the toy and, frankly, anything else her little precious heart desires. Eventually, after she yelled at me enough with her head bobbling around, I just gave her the toy.

I’m a mom, not Mr. Miyagi. She can wax on and wax off a little later.

If I let my love rule, I’d rescue her during every struggle. She wouldn’t learn or develop the skills she needs to become the woman she’s destined to be. Crawl. Walk. Run. I’d be raising another Mariah Carey as she gets carried around on a chaise lounge all day by shirtless men.

Not on my watch!

As an adult, I’ve realized that through every crisis or problem I can’t quite figure out, I look at my mom with that same incredulous expression — “A little help here?” Of course, she imparts her wisdom, but in most instances, she has her comforting, loving tone that says, “I can’t rescue you. You have to learn to do it yourself. And sometimes failing is exactly what you need.”

So then I tell her if the lasagna noodles come out hard, she only has herself to blame and hang up in a huff ...


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