Today I helped E tie his shoes.
He tied the first tie. I tied the bow. He tied the double knot.
He grinned at me. "That feels so much better!"
"Better than your old shoes?"
"No - better when you help me."
I've been thinking lately that now that he's big there are certain things he needs to do on his own - and tying his shoes has been a major power struggle for us. The conversation continued.
"Yeah, it feels better to me to. Sometimes I make bad choices, and that not helping you with your shoes thing was one of them."
I'm sort of getting it that I want him to be able to do what he can do, but that frustrating him to the point of tears about something he's not quite ready to do doesnt actually help him learn to do it. I'm sort of getting it that I want him to know he can rely on me and others to help him when he needs it, not feel that he has to figure everything out by himself, even though he is very big now that he's six. I'm sort of getting it that if he has the deep confidence that help is available to him, it will help him be helpful too, when his time comes. I'm sort of getting it, but I'm not all the way there yet.
I hope he'll be patient with me while I keep learning that.