You know how everyone keeps saying that kids grow up so fast? That if you blink you’ll miss it and before you know it your snotty toddler will be a snotty teenager and you’ll miss the days you could just put her in the timeout chair when she misbehaved? Well, I’ve finally started to get that she’s-so-big-now feeling, and Lilly isn’t even officially two yet! In case you’re wondering if you teeny tiny tyrant is in fact all grown up and categorised as a toddler now, here’s a handy dandy list:
- They have very definite likes and dislikes when it comes to food
Kids have always been notoriously picky eaters, from the early days where they refuse to latch properly during breastfeeding, or later on when they refuse to eat the mushy blobs of food stuff you’re trying to pretend tastes good. There is however a subtle difference between babies and toddlers when it comes to picky eating: While babies are just generally picky and can be tricked into eating healthy things, toddlers know exactly what they want, when they want it, and they aren’t afraid to vocalise this preference and God help anyone who tries to serve them something different.
This doesn’t mean though that what they like or dislike stays the same, oh on, that would be too easy, their likes and dislikes are as fickle as can be! So while one day peas and mashed potatoes are your child’s favourite food in the whole wide world, she’ll wail like a banshee if you try to serve her her ‘favourite food’ the next day because of course she doesn’t like it anymore.
Toddlers are frustratingly random at best and little food flinging monsters at worst.
- They have favourite TV shows
When I was a kid, there weren’t whole channels and sections of daily programming dedicated to my entertainment; we basically had Saturday morning cartoons and VHS tapes of recorded Tom and Jerry cartoons that we watched over and over and over again and never complained.
Not so the modern toddler.
No Siree, they now have not one, not two, but endless TV channels dedicated to kids programming with hundreds of different shows playing 24/7. Which is fine as an idea, but the problem comes in when kids are old enough to realise that there are ALWAYS cartoons available at the click of a button. So yes, you know you have a toddler on your hands when you can’t sit down to watch a single episode of grown-up TV without a tiny tyrant bouncing off the walls, demanding you change the channel to Sprout so she can watch Calliou.
Which brings me to my next point:
- You can’t watch TV while they are awake
And not because of the aforementioned demands-that-you-change-the-channel reason, no the reason you can no longer watch anything even remotely grownup with your toddler in the room is because they are literally like sponges when it comes to picking up language and ideas that you really don’t want them to pick up. You can spend half the day singing the ABC song till you’re blue in the face and they won’t pick it up, but turn on an episode of How I Met Your Mother and they’ll be running around yelling ‘shit shit shit shit!’ before the day is out.
It’s easier when they’re babies; they are more likely to ignore the TV and play with their toys while you catch up on your favourite shows, but toddlers? Their ears prick up the second you turn the TV on and they will raptly watch whatever comes on, kid friendly or no. Which leaves Mommy yearning for some grown-up time, or at least a little time away from manically happy cartoon characters living in a primary coloured world and perpetually happy adults.
- They have fuller social calendars than you do
Remember when you used to have a social life that didn’t involve running around after a screeching 2 year old refusing to put her pants on after a diaper change? No? Congratulations, you have a toddler on your hands! Welcome to the world of endless play dates, frequent trips to the park and never-ending ‘5 mins’ at the Mall play area when all you wanted was to pick up a new skillet and be home before lunch time.
Oh you’ll try to make non-toddler related plans with your friends from time to time, but managing to actually pull them off? Not so easy. You’ll plan and coordinate, than someone will have to cancel because their kid has to be taken to the dentist, or their babysitter cancelled, and before you know it the ‘girls night’ will either have been postponed indefinitely or devolved into a ‘bring the kids’ thing and end up just another play date.
Oh the joys of motherhood.
This post is linking with: