My first child was a breeze, and therefore totally unreliable. I was not prepared for the true meaning of toddlerhood when my second child came screaming into this stage. I thought it would follow along the lines of my previous experience. I got this, I’d tell myself when people told me that second kids are the game changers. I quickly realized I DON’T GOT THIS. Not a bit. My second child had no rule book and not a single F to give. Second child was a no limit soldier with a Napoleon complex and an operatic set of lungs.
Coming out of this stage, I feel like I’ve been through war. There were times of peaceful truces but the feeling of slogging through muck and mud just sticks with me. However, now that I look back and see it through a new perspective, I can admit that there are some things that toddlers just get.
- Different pasta shapes taste different. It’s true. I could get all science-y and blather on about how different shapes hold on to sauce thereby changing the flavor profile. Smooth shapes hold less sauce and pasta with ridges clings to sauce so you get more flavor in those bites. Don’t fight me about this, fight science.
- Some cups are just better than others and only the best one will do. We’ve all witnessed those meltdowns when only the red cup will do and all the other billion cups we have are bad and just awful. I get it though. I recently lost my treasured coffee cup and my coffee just isn’t the same in a regular ol’ coffee cup. It tastes different. It’s not as special. It almost mocks me when I drink out of it because it knows it’s not good enough. The horror!
- Going boneless is a valid response in certain situations. When you are utterly overwhelmed and life just keeps on taunting you, that is the time to just go boneless and melt into the floor. You know what I’m talking about. Limbs become jelly and won’t support you. You have no choice but to melt and become one with the floor. Flinging your limbs in a starfish pattern helps to disperse your intense feelings. Again, take it up with science, but try it and see if it doesn’t help.
- People looking at you IS annoying. How many times have we heard, “Mom, he/she is looking at me!” in a tone of voice that makes our skin twitch? Who has thought to ourselves that Lord have mercy what is the big deal? Just look the other way. But it’s not that simple, and I finally get why my toddler thought it was a big deal. LOOKS, not to be confused with everyday looks, are different. Those stares have a weight to them and are a tangible presence. My own Mom has perfected the LOOK and you can feel it. It taps you on the shoulder and says, “Excuse me, care to say that again?” It applies pressure and slides along your skin and it’s just so irritating and knowing. When that stare comes from someone who you just aren’t feeling at that moment, like your sister or brother or spouse, that stare is the ultimate throw down challenge.