It’s here. Toddler-hood has arrived at our house in full force. It came loudly and without much warning. One day my angelic baby could seemingly do no wrong, and the next her sticky little hands were into everything. Resistance is futile, mamas; toddler-hood is a beast that cannot be tamed. I have simply accepted that I now live in a constant state of madness.
If you’ve been there before, you’re in the throes with me now, or you’re (nervously) awaiting your turn, then this list is for you:
- No becomes the favorite word.
It’s so adorable when your baby begins to say his or her first words…until the preferred word of choice becomes no. ALL OF THE TIME. TO ALL OF THE THINGS. Even when you know the actual answer is yes, somehow the response is always no!
- Diaper changes are like a wrestling match.
Changing my daughter’s diaper is like trying to wrangle a bucking bull. My opponent may only be 24 pounds, but she is FIERCE. I should be way stronger, right? LOLOLOLOL! Toddlers develop superhuman strength when trying to resist a diaper change.
- Just when you think you’ve read Chicka Chicka Boom Boom for the last time…
I love that my daughter loves books. I do not love that she loves to read the same book 12,489,235 times in a row. Confession: I had to hide “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” because I can’t muster any more enthusiasm to care about ABC and the coconut tree.
- Your home décor is very plastic and very bright.
Please explain to me why toddler toys have so. many. little. pieces. I can barely walk through my house without stepping on a Mega Block, Mickey Mouse magnet, or plastic piece of food. The aesthetic of my home is now toddler chic: heavy on the toddler, light on the chic.
- Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is a lifesaver.
I’m not above using a little screen time when I need to get things done, and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is where it’s at. The Hot Dog Song plays on repeat at our house, and every day I silently hope that today’s Mystery Mouskatool will be an evening without a meltdown.
- Snacks are bargaining chips.
I never go anywhere without a stash of snacks: goldfish, puffs, and graham crackers. Mama needs to get her grocery shopping done in peace, so the snacks must come! My daughter magically behaves if she’s stuffing her face with treats. A mouth full of goldfish is like an enchanted elixir.
- Hitting and kicking and slapping, oh my!
I wish you could have seen the shock and horror on my face the first time my once- precious angel baby hit me. How could she do that?! Where did she learn that?! Her wild animal instincts kick in when she’s vexed, and because she doesn’t have the words to express herself yet, she lashes out like a cave child.
- There are demon-esque temper tantrums.
Y’all, these are no joke. It’s like my innocent baby has been possessed when something doesn’t go her way, and I fully expect her head to start spinning around. Luckily the majority of these episodes have occurred in the privacy of our home, but I am terrified for the day one will take place in public. (And you know it’s only a matter of time.)
- There is a lot of actual toddling.
My daughter has been walking for several months now, but there are times she looks like a drunken, stumbling frat boy. Falls, trips, slips, and bumps are a daily part of life, and I’m constantly holding my breath in worry.
- The smiles, the giggles, the kisses, the hugs – it’s all so very worth it.
These days are tiring, mamas, but they truly are the days. The ones that I am sure will be among my best. I never want to forget the way my daughter backs herself into my lap to snuggle or read stories, her deep belly laughs, the way she stops to smell flowers, her high pitched happy squeals, her hugs with back pats, or the way she says, mama. Toddler-hood is but a brief season, and I’m sure I will miss it dearly when it is gone.