Ten Things No One Tells You About Toddlers.

Almost from the moment Tori was born, I looked forward to the day when she could walk and talk and feed herself. When she became a toddler, in other words. Well, she’s a toddler now, and I admit, there are days I wonder, “why was I in such a hurry to get here?” Because this girl? Is hell on wheels.

And here are ten reasons why.

She went directly from those first hesitant steps to running. And run she does. Through the house. Across the yard. Down the driveway. We sometimes joke that we need to microchip her, because if nothing gets in her way, that girl will just keep going and going and going…kind of like a beagle with a good scent in his schnoz.

She never stops. Ever. I don’t think she knows how to sit still. Period. She runs from one activity to the next like a little Flash Gordon. She even wags her butt in the air when she’s trying to fall asleep – just so she can feel like she’s still moving.

She’s part velociraptor. Remember those nasty little dinosaurs in  Jurassic Park that would attack out of nowhere and bite arms and legs off? Tori’s bite is exactly like that. I’m just waiting for her to draw blood.

She does things just to get a reaction out of me. I can almost hear the thoughts in her head. “Electrical outlets are off limits? Then how ’bout I put my hand over one?” “Oh, and you’d rather I didn’t eat this cord? Well, now it’s looking rather tasty.”  I knew to expect these shenanigans when she hit the teenage years, but I wasn’t prepared to deal with such contrariness at age one.

She’s determined to make the animals bite her. I know she knows how to pet nicely. I’ve seen her do it repeatedly. So I have no idea why she insists on pulling fur, grabbing tails and yanking ears. I think she has a death wish.

She can’t bear to be restrained. We’ve already talked about her inability to stop. So when it’s time to put her in her car seat? Full blown hysterics ensue. I literally have to hold her squirming body down with my head while I blindly thread her flailing  arms through the straps. By the time I’m done, I feel as though I’ve wrestled a bear.

She would rather suffer a million time outs than get her diaper changed. Merely mentioning the words “diaper change” is enough to send her running. I’ve gotten to be a pro at wiping bottoms and fastening diapers with my daughter arranged in strange positions – standing, on her hands and knees, even upside down.

She’s training to be a professional food fighter. By the conclusion of every meal, food is everywhere – the floor, the ceiling, her hair, my hair…it’s unbelievable.

She’s mastered the art of the temper tantrum. And oh my lord, what a temper tantrum it is, complete with limbs flailing, head banging and screaming. It’s ear-shattering. Fortunately, they don’t last long, but it’s hell on earth while they do.

She’s more fun than I ever imagined she could be. Sure, I’m starting to get bald patches on my head from where I’ve pulled my hair out. But I’ve also got newly taut muscles from all the belly laughs. All the frustration? Totally seems worth it when I see that shining  face giggling back at me.

Toddlerhood.  It’s a brave new world. One I’m not sure how to navigate. But I’m sure we’ll muddle through, somehow. Now, tell me, dear readers. What other surprises does this little girl have in store for me?

29 Comments on Ten Things No One Tells You About Toddlers.

  1. Jen
    July 6, 2010 at 9:05 pm (6 years ago)

    I have one girl and three boys, one thing that my boys never had was the attitude. I was totally not prepared for this, “Don’t tell me no, You can’t talk to me, Fine!” attitude.

    Oh and the Independence… little girls want to do everything themselves.

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 7, 2010 at 2:09 pm (6 years ago)

      She definitely is Miss Independent. Makes me want to scream sometimes. I mean, you can’t brush your own teeth when you lack the coordination to manipulate the brush in your mouth, am I right?

      Reply
  2. Allison @ Alli 'n Son
    July 7, 2010 at 8:51 am (6 years ago)

    Oh, just you wait. This is nothing compared to a 2 year old. Or a 3 and 4 year old from what I’ve heard. Good times.

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 7, 2010 at 2:09 pm (6 years ago)

      Yes, I know. I’m hoping that it gets easier to deal with because of my magically thicker skin and endless patience, but I’m probably wrong.

      Reply
  3. Balancing Mama (Julie)
    July 7, 2010 at 12:48 pm (6 years ago)

    My daughter is 2 years and 3 months old. She can be such a nightmare!!! She’s totally bossy. Her personality can go from one extreme (goofy & hilarious) to the other (i.e., your velociraptor) in a blink of an eye. I have scratches on my arms and more hairs pulled out of my head (by her, not me) that I wish to count. We’ve had the car seat fight many, many times. Now she gets to eat a pack of fruit snacks when she first gets in the car at home – nope, I’m not above bribery at this point.

    But yeah, she can be really fun too. It’s great to be able to enjoy playgrounds and the swimming pool now that she’s more independent. I just didn’t realize the joys would be so overshadowed by the insanity.

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 7, 2010 at 2:07 pm (6 years ago)

      I’m told it only gets worse. But surely not? I refuse to believe it.

      Tell me, how is it possible to deal with all this when you have more than one child?

      Reply
      • Balancing Mama (Julie)
        July 8, 2010 at 10:39 am (6 years ago)

        I have no idea! Moms of multiple kids probably think I’m nuts for struggling so much with my one.

        Reply
        • Pollyanna
          July 8, 2010 at 2:44 pm (6 years ago)

          You just change the routine. And hope the older one wants to “help” with baby – having a kid who can “fetch” is awesome!

          Reply
          • Amber
            July 8, 2010 at 7:42 pm (6 years ago)

            Good to know. You know. Just in case…

  4. one cluttered brain
    July 7, 2010 at 3:07 pm (6 years ago)

    One word–Potty-training. Wait that is 2 words…*sigh*

    It is AWFUL…wanna Potty train my third? I hate is so…

    I need to gather the materials, potty charts, stickers, treats for her…
    I love the way you write girl. Someday I’m going to meet you. That’s a goal of mine someday…We’d have a good time I’m sure of it…

    Reply
    • one cluttered brain
      July 7, 2010 at 3:08 pm (6 years ago)

      That is I hate IT so…

      Sorry, I am having a TON of trouble commenting lately….:)

      Reply
    • Amber
      July 7, 2010 at 5:15 pm (6 years ago)

      I can’t even imagine how we’re going to tackle that one at the moment. You think since she hates getting her diaper changed she might be good about it? No, that’s probably too much to hope for.

      Reply
  5. Jessica - This is Worthwhile
    July 7, 2010 at 4:19 pm (6 years ago)

    They also never tell you about how toddlers love to point out bodily functions in public :) “Is that woman pooping, Mommy?” when we’re in the restroom, or “Mommy! I’m pooping now!!!!” in the mall. It’s fun!

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 7, 2010 at 5:13 pm (6 years ago)

      Hmmmm. Good times. Although I am looking forward to hearing her speak in complete sentences…

      Reply
  6. Wendy
    July 7, 2010 at 6:00 pm (6 years ago)

    Perfectly written!
    I’ve got my own little bossy 2 1/2 year old who wants to pick out her own clothes, climb into her own car seat, pick her own cup to drink from. She tells me to move, go upstairs, and wake up! The bossiness can sometimes drive this mama mad but it makes it all worthwhile when she lays her head on me and lets me play with her hair or when out of the blue says “I love you!” Ahh, heart melting almost enough to wake her from her nap right now. Or not.

    Reply
  7. SaucyB
    July 8, 2010 at 6:59 am (6 years ago)

    Ah yes, i remember those days very well. One day everything was humming along. I’m feeling like i’ve got this baby thing down – we’re in a routine and rockin’ and rollin’. And then one morning it’s like WTF? Who are you little person??
    I’m convinced that kids are so incredibly over the top adorable at the toddler stage as a fail safe from us all putting them on e-Bay as Buy It Now items. 😉

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 8, 2010 at 11:00 am (6 years ago)

      I think you’re right. Cute as she is, I’ve still been tempted to put a for sale sign on her back a few times.

      Reply
  8. Pollyanna
    July 8, 2010 at 2:42 pm (6 years ago)

    Your last comment, just made me laugh (the evil, maniacal kind). Shoot, if we told you what was in store, it would be like ruining a great movie or book by telling you the ending.

    Ok, I’ll give you a hint. Talking. Non-stop. And with that comes questions. Non-stop. And then there is the frustration with coordination in putting on her own clothes, eating by herself, and potty training. But along the way comes independence. A tough pill to swallow but at times it’s a welcome relief – she will be able to tell you what she wants, what hurts and how she feels. She will sweetly tell you she loves you using her very own voice (and other people will be able to understand what she is saying).

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 8, 2010 at 7:42 pm (6 years ago)

      She already talks non-stop, but I can’t understand her! I don’t know if intelligible chatter will be better or worse!

      Reply
  9. The Mommyologist
    July 8, 2010 at 3:48 pm (6 years ago)

    It is so true! Toddlers are totally hell on wheels. I used to have to chase my son all over the house and he was into EVERYTHING! The good news is that the next phase really does get easier. You’ll actually be able to leave the room and not worry!

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 8, 2010 at 7:41 pm (6 years ago)

      Be in a different room than her? Is that possible? I’ve forgotten what that’s like! Something to look forward to then!

      Reply
  10. Amy
    July 8, 2010 at 5:58 pm (6 years ago)

    I just found your blog through The Stroller Ballet and I have to say, our toddlers might be twins. This post reminds me very much of my own spirited little one.

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 8, 2010 at 7:40 pm (6 years ago)

      Ahhh, well, it’s good to know I’m not alone…hopefully spirited toddlers means confident teenagers?

      Reply
  11. Jessica Dallas
    July 9, 2010 at 3:26 pm (6 years ago)

    I love the “she’s determined to make animals bite her.” Laughed out loud. My guy does that. The part dino bit is also identified over here in the smallest member of our clan. Holy crap. The kid can rip into anything and has a million high pitched squeals to match.

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 9, 2010 at 8:15 pm (6 years ago)

      Mine even roars. It’s really kind of funny…at least when she’s not clamping down on you.

      Reply
  12. Kim
    July 11, 2010 at 9:26 pm (6 years ago)

    I think my son just might be your daughter’s future husband…they sound identical! What is with the diaper changing issue…seriously…they want to sit around in the stuff you find in those things? YUCK!!!

    http://anthonytheboss.wordpress.com/2010/07/11/supermom/

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 12, 2010 at 8:48 am (6 years ago)

      The worst is when she tries to put her hand in it when I take the diaper off. Ewwww.

      Reply
  13. Las Vegas Mama
    July 12, 2010 at 2:28 pm (6 years ago)

    Ahh they are so fun arent they?? Sure they make life crazy but OMG it is hilarious to see the things they come up with!

    Reply
    • Amber
      July 12, 2010 at 9:52 pm (6 years ago)

      I’m never bored anymore, that’s for sure.

      Reply

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