For weeks before Rhett turned 6, he complained that his birthday was impending. fight against ageIt wasn’t that he didn’t WANT to be 6. He just was afraid of the responsibilities that came with that advanced age. From birth he has been my most independent boy.   It is a necessity when you are #3.   He learns quickly by watching and listening and in most cases figures things out on his own. This independence is in every area of his life with two exceptions:
  1. He wants to be walked to his Kindergarten class.
  2. He wants help with his bath.
If he wasn’t my LAST {baby} child, I probably would have pushed these skills with a bit more enthusiasm. Truth is, I LIKE walking him to his classroom and there is nothing sweeter than cuddling a clean towel-clad child and sneaking a kiss or two onto wet hair. Since fall, I have hinted that he could bathe by himself.   He resisted and declared he would when he was 6. And there lies the quandary of turning 6…he wanted to be older, but bathing alone loomed ominously. I have been lax about enforcing post-six bathing independence. Some nights he has gone it alone. Some nights I have given some cleanliness support. Last night he was being really ornery in the bath.   I stated I would be leaving him to soak out his sour attitude. He looked up with drippy blue eyes and said, “Mom, if you stay I will let you hug and kiss me while I dry off.” An offer I couldn’t resist. I have stopped worrying about his lack of independence and started worrying about his ease of manipulation.

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  1. It appears I have a frightening amount in common with a six year-old. (No, I’m fine with bathing alone.) But I’m having trouble coming to terms with the responsibilities that are coming with age. I turned 30 last year and realized one of my duties, very soon, is going to need to be deciding whether or not to have kids. I’ve developed a whole blog around the decision, but making it doesn’t seem to be getting an easier. Growing up is hard!!!

  2. A few years from now he will most likely be a preteen getting much “too cool” for mom and you will be so glad you took advantage of his wanting you at bath time when he was 6. Manipulative, perhaps, yet still pretty darn sweet!

  3. How can you turn that down?! I think six is still okay to be babied now and then. And seriously, there’s nothing cuter than a clean kiddo.