If you have a toddler right now and you are wondering how other moms keep their sanity when raising one, you are not alone. From my previous post, I described how motherhood has changed me and I promised to highlight on a life with toddler(s). Toddlers are between 1-3 years old. But the beacon is mostly shone on 2 year-old kids. At this stage, they tend to drive you insane. A reason they are termed “terrible twos”. Any Mom who’s got it together must have supernatural powers. My two year old toddler sometimes leaves me in tears, ‘cos talking is just a waste of time. I kept feeling bad that I was doing something wrong but when I asked other moms and they said same thing, these were what I observed we shared in common.
- Meal times are Cray Cray! : She wants a slice of bread with some peanut butter. Then she wants it in squares. Noooo, not squares she means tiny bits. Now you’ve ruined it. She wants the bread whole again but this time, with jam. So who eats the wasted peanut buttered bread? Yes, yours truly. This is our spar routine except she’s just in a good mood and she just wants a peaceful meal. Another thing; she loves to eat on her own and makes a mess and even when you try to help her, you are her worst enemy. How I cope? I just designate a wide spread for her meals where she does all the mess and is happy. Then I’m happy too.
- Selective Hearing: She would say anything and everything. She would talk above your voice or the sound of the TV show you are trying to watch. You just have to figure out how to hear in the midst of her whining and wailing. How I cope? I just say yes to everything and somehow my anatomy has been fashioned in a way that I hear what I want and leave out the rest. Wow! I’ve got super powers.
- Having a very clean house with a toddler, all by yourself is a myth: From toys to spills, toilet training accidents to scribbling. There goes your dream clean house…Poof! Some days as I’m cleaning , she’s scattering. You pack up toys and there’s this mischief written on her face like “muhahaha, thanks for wasting your time”. And she just turns it over without remorse. Kai!!! How do I cope? I clean when she’s asleep so I can savor in the cleanliness for a while and lower my expectations when she’s awake. I also try to involve her in picking up toys but that seems to be short-lived.
- My phone is her phone: Don’t be surprised if you get an unintended message from me. That’s my daughter pinging the world away. I’ve been so wary of her handling my phone. So much I don’t even keep pictures before she sends things to the wrong people. And yes, she has her game tablet but she prefers my own.
- You’ve got company everywhere: From the Loo to a “meeting with boo”, she just keeps bursting in like an FBI trying to uncover a drug cartel. I’ve just accepted this and planned my timings better.
- Everybody gets to watch CBeebies: She thinks it’s her prerogative to hold the remote control and tune in. Yes, she knows her way around that control and other gadgets. I was quite glad she wanted CBeebies ‘cos when she was a little over a year old, she would cry and bring the house down to watch Trace Urban. I’m into music but I hardly watch that channel but I won’t lie, sometimes I just give in. So it was heartwarming to see her interests grow into stuff kids like. Now, she’s gone overboard. We practically know each show’s theme song. And I must say, I’m learning things too. Some basic information and lessons we overlook, are highlighted on these channels. Can you imagine? I learnt on CBeebies about the facts of the Dead Sea. I digress, the Dead Sea is called that name because it is too salty for plants and animals to live in there. It is so salty, everything floats on the sea. Even a wrecking ball floats ‘cos of the amount of salt. It is also not a sea but a lake as deep as the height of Eiffel Tower. My God! I didn’t learn this in school. I want my school fees back.
- They are a reflection of you: My daughter has cracked me up and shocked me with some behaviors that I and Le Boo usually portray. I now know how I talk and how I behave around her because she just expresses it same way. That’s scary. Makes me walk on egg shells. Lol. Right now, she takes up phones and records herself talking….Is her Mummy thinking of vlogging? Let’s just see how it goes. *wink*
- Everywhere is a play yard, everything is a play thing: Let me just say it here. If you plan getting a posh furniture, especially whites and light hues, you shall be of all women most miserable. You will talk from Ghana to Namibia. To save yourself the head-ache, Don’t! Not only will it be used as their art canvas, the map of Nigeria you will get just cleaning a spot will make you put that couch on a yard sale. Secondly, if you want to save yourself from screaming because of everything being used as a play tool, just keep it from their reach. So far as they can reach it, they’d play with it.
- Old tricks don’t apply: Our parents got away with some tricks but now, You dare not ask her to get her shoes, so that you can escape from her wanting to join you out. Toddlers don’t find this funny. They would cry the house down. Always be diplomatic and use better tricks.
- Spare the rod, spoil the child: In today’s world, this point is controversial. In my time, you must be mad to question disciplinary measures. These toddlers nail it everytime to bring you to your wits’ end. When they seem not to take correction after a lot of diplomacy, a little ‘Tass Tass’ on the bum-bum won’t hurt anyone. They seem to reset with that. After a loud yell, then sobs, then a cuddle, then sleep. LOL
Moms, so does this seem like your life? Or is my life relatively crazier or calmer than yours? Here’s the irony; When we go out to see people, she acts so sweet and well-put, making me look like a liar. LOL. They praise her on how cute and calm she is, then we go home and as we shut the door….there goes my baby! *facepalm*. But there are some sweet things she does that make everything worth it. If you are taming a toddler right now, Don’t worry. We shall overcome. Just take this time to enjoy them like I’m doing ‘cos I hear they grow so fast. For now, I’m gearing up as my son becomes a toddler too. He’s been showing some traits, I’m in hot pepper soup!
PPS: This post will act as “exhibit A”, years later when she is married and raising her toddlers, shouting “I didn’t ‘kill’ my mother, so you will not ‘kill’ me”…….Hollup! Say what?! Honeychild! ‘Exhibit A’ is here- 30th September 2016!
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