How do I teach my son to be independent when he's so dependent on me? 

Although he is only 16 months old and I'm not talking about living on his own or anything like that, Oliver is very much dependent on me. 

We are still trying to master rolling over, so we aren't walking yet.

I tell ya, I have got Arnold Schwarzenegger arms carrying this little one everywhere! 

I have grown used to eating cold meals, because I have to feed him first.  

Now I'd continue, but I'm starting to sound a little bitter - yikes!

​I've understood from the get-go that Oliver would have delays from being born so early, and having his diagnosis of spina bifida.  

But once I found myself doing more harm than good with shielding him, I wanted to break him of this shield I had on him. 

When I carried him everywhere, I was actually delaying him even more from learning how to sit up.  

Once I started to sit him on the ground, he went from folding himself in half to sitting straight up.  

When I was too scared to feed him solid foods, I was not only delaying him from getting the right nutrients, but from some really yummy food!  

So I started off slowly with mashed potatoes, mac-n-cheese, and soft veggies (don't worry, it gets better.) 

Now he's eating chicken, grilled cheese, and even ate a whole bowl of chicken and biscuits (made by Grandma Mary)! 

I knew I had to let go of some things in order for him to grow in other places. 

One day though, I'll have to teach my son how to cath himself. 

One day I will have to teach him to take those first steps on his own, even though momma will be right behind him. 

I'll even have to teach him how to fight those dang insurance companies on his own, without the help from mommy. 

I guess this blog really boils down do I let go when my son is ready to do things on his own! Waa! 

It sounds a little silly since again, he is only 16 months old, but his future is always heavy on my mind. 

We get older, never younger,so it's inevitable to not think about the future. 

I think about the brutal honesty young children have, and how that might hurt my baby. 

Or the people who never learned that staring was rude.  

At what point do you mark a line and decide there's only so much you can do for them, and the rest they have to experience and learn on their own?  

If that doesn't scream first time mommy, then I don't know what does! 

To me, for now at least, that line is drawn in erasable marker. 

This is because we are both still learning where to be dependent on, and independent of, one another. 

I can mark a line in one area, then come back and erase it when I need to be there for him. 

I can step back and let him try crawling to that toy he wants so bad. 

But when he topples over and bonks his head, I'll be right there over that line to cuddle him and make it all better. 

These lines differ with everyone, and don't even have to exist for some. 

For me, they exist because I know my little fighter will want to do things for himself one day without mom always being there. 

For now we just push each other to try a little harder here and there, and ultimately support one another. 

Not to mention the awesome set of arms I've been modeling this summer!

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