Independence Day / by Susie Lubell

It's independence day and I'm thinking about independence. The other day my son was angry with me for whatever reason and went into his room and told me to go away. He actually told me to leave his room and don't talk to him. At first I was distraught. What do you mean? I do everything for you, you little rat. I wipe your ass for god's sake. I painted this room and bought all the furniture and hung the art so you can kiss my tushy, I'm stayin'. I tell YOU what to do and not the other way around.

But I respected his wishes and left him alone with his thoughts and his kitty cat. And after a moment I was actually delighted. You want to be alone? You got it pally. I'm going to Tahiti actually. I'm stopping for coffee at Starbucks, then I'm getting a pedicure, then I'm going shopping without you annoying the crap out of me, then I'm going to watch four movies back to back in the cinema and then I'm going out to dinner where they don't allow kids and then I'm going to Tahiti.

Independence is tricky. A blessing and a curse. I so desperately want him to be able to put on his clothes, and use the bathroom, and play in his room without me, and walk across the street to the park, and drive himself to preschool (okay that one's a little far fetched), but the minute he wants his space, I sort of want to be the center of his universe again. That's my own inner toddler at work. I look like a 33 year old woman but really I'm only two and a half and I want it both ways.