Elias loves to do everything I’m doing. He loves helping with chores. He copies me when I play with his toys. He wants to eat what I eat for breakfast and lunch. He wants to carry in the groceries. I could go on and on.
Often I get worried by how long something will take. I want to finish unloading the dishwasher quickly so that we can go play or sing songs or head out on an errand. Sometimes I make the mistake of trying to do everything myself. But then I have to get it through my thick skull…once more….that Elias has just as much fun unloading the dishwasher as playing with his toys.
So this morning I let him unload each plate…one at a time. He passed each one to me, and I put it away in the cupboard. He was so proud. He was so happy. His little smile stretched from ear to ear each time I said, “Thank you! You’re so helpful!” Then we did the cups and other miscellaneous items. (I did the silverware because I didn’t want him touching knives yet). I thought to myself as we were finishing up that it didn’t actually take much longer. I included him, I gave his contribution value. He was learning and contributing and feeling important. He was interacting with me. I just need to slow down more often and let him try new things.