Robot #1 is currently trimming his OWN TOENAILS. (With clippers, even. I offered, but he would not let me paint them. Sadness.) This is not one of those milestones they tend to include in the baby books. But, truly, this is a MAJOR moment for me. This is bigger than Tween's First Eyeroll, and a sure sign that my kid is growing up.
It may seem a bit odd to place so much importance on this kind of a mundane moment, but these are the ones that catch you by surprise. You plan for things like your kid's first day of school, first solo bike ride, first overnight without mom, even first lost tooth. And while they still have devastating emotional impact, you generally have an opportunity to see them coming. This sort of thing just blindsides you.
I find that these "small" moments have more power for me as my kids grow. The first time they didn't need help brushing their teeth. The first time L made a sandwich on his own. The first time C washed his own hair. The first time they figured out how to change the chords and connect up the dvd player on their own. These are moments that prove that those small beings I grew inside my body and who used to be completely dependent on me for everything are autonomous and slowly becoming completely independent. I used to be, quite literally, the ocean in which they swam. Now, I am an accessory. I am no longer integral to their sense of self.
And I am simultaneously petrified (because what will these new creatures be!?), excited (because what will these creatures be!?), saddened (because I will never have those sweet cuddly babies back), and overjoyed (because these young men growing before my eyes are amazing and wonderful). These small, seemingly insignificant moments are, at the end of the day, awful, in the true original sense that they fill me with awe.