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Homeschooling The Well Prepared Child: Pumpkins, Knives, and Becoming Independent

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Pumpkins, Knives, and Becoming Independent

    

     
     By the time I was 10, I was cooking and preparing all the meals for my whole family on a daily basis. On my own. Both of my parents worked full time jobs and I always felt cooking and cleaning was my way of helping out the family. That is how I learned to use a knife. The way I held the knife and cut things always scared my parents to death. They always thought it looked like I was going to cut myself. I slice things, cutting straight towards my hand. Always have, always will. Yes, I have sliced myself on occasion, but nothing terribly bad. I've never had stitches unless they were surgery related on something normal. You couldn't tell me my method was ever anything dangerous, because I've never felt any danger or severely hurt myself. I have learned to have great control over the knife, even if it was pointed straight towards my body. 
     Now you ask why I am telling you this... cause my daughter is 10. She has not been made to cook entire meals on her own, we do them together. I am over protective as a mother and at the same time, I try teach her to do everything on her own. Using a knife, I realized lately, is not one of those skills I have let her practice much on her own. I have always hovered over her, tell her what to do, what not to do. 'Don't hold it like that', 'Never cut straight towards your body.' Everything my parents have told me or told me not to do over the years, (and I ignored) has come out of my mouth. I need to let go of the control and just let her learn on her own. But, GOODNESS, it is scary! 
     Why wouldn't she do things like me? I am her model. Everything she knows, she has learned by watching me. We do not spend a lot of time apart. My little shadow, my mini me. I love this. I need to break this. Sometimes, I feel like she is not as independent as she should be. She does not venture out much on her own, preferring to have me close. I am very independent. My mini me, not so much. I need to break this by allowing and encouraging her to go out and do more on her own with out mommy hovering over her every step when she is completing what I feel is a dangerous task. 
     So when she asked if she could cut a pumpkin we harvested yesterday to get the seeds out, I said yes. I sat back and took photos while she cut the top off of the pumpkin and TRIED not to tell her to 'do it like this' and 'don't do it like that.' She has watched me her whole life. She knows what she is doing, but GOODNESS, it is scary! My daughter has my technique... 

     

      I'll just pray she develops my control. At this point, I think I need to issue an apology to my parents for freaking them out all those years, and a thank you to them for allowing me to learn to become independent. Love you guys!