I have been warned on numerous occasions, “prepare for the terrible-twos,” “when they hit two is when they are the worst,” and “wait until you get to the terrifying threes.” The tantrums. The tears. The dramas. I have heard it all. Honestly, when people make these statements, I feel bad for them and their children especially.
However, we’re here. We have officially reached the toddler years.
As our children grow, they go through stages just like we did. At two, they are speaking more often, putting sentences together, becoming more independent, and trying to understand their emotions and how to express them. Toddlers do not understand the concept of “there’s a time and place for everything.” They do not understand that a minute isn’t an eternity long, or that mommy using the bathroom or taking a shower doesn’t mean she’s gone forever. They are learning the way the world works and it can be challenging for us and for them.
I have been told this is the most trying stage yet, and honestly I agree. My daughter has her moments where she’s defiant, emotional, independent, and needy at the same time. We have experienced her tantrums and her breakdowns. She’s thrown fits and shown her angry side, but we’ve also seen the vulnerable side that usually follows. You name it and we have experienced it in the Douglas household, just like every other family with a toddler.
But, let me tell you about this “trying” stage we’re in right now, it’s my favorite one yet. Your daddy’s favorite too! It’s teaching us how to grow as parents and humans and guide you through life.
Because this stage, this stage is where you first said “wuv you too, Mommy.”
This is the stage where you enjoy running around and screaming with daddy. Where you wrestle and play fight and the sound of laughter fills our home.
It’s the stage where you sing “happy birthday” all day, and tell every person you see “happy birthday!” Because you’re excited about your own special day.
It’s the stage where you pull our faces close and give us the sweetest kiss on our lips at the most random moments.
The one where you run up and nestle yourself right between daddy and I, and try to steal our snacks.
The stage where in the middle of your favorite cartoon, you’ll turn towards Mommy and give her the sweetest smile and tell her you love her.
And where you and Mommy sing your favorite songs at the top of our lungs during our long car rides!
It’s the stage where you’re learning how to express your love as much as you’re learning how to express your frustrations, sadness, and happiness.
I’m not going to sugarcoat it, this stage can be trying. There are many tears and tantrums, the days feel long and it all feels endless. However, what no one tells you is how much fun the “terrible-twos” are and how you will fall even more in love with your child during this time. They don’t tell you about how beautiful these moments are and how much you will learn and grow together.
Your daddy and I talk about your wonderful, independent, and loving personality all the time. We constantly reminisce about all the things you have done and that you have learned. We talk about how much we love these moments, no matter how difficult they may be, and we’re in awe at how fast you’re growing. We talk about all that you’re learning and how sweet you can be. Your darling, untamed curls, your large, brown and beautiful, loving eyes, and the way you shower us with your love. The tantrums, the tears, the meltdowns, the fits, the emotion-filled moments, the kisses and hugs, we want to freeze them all.
One day you’re not going to be this small. You’re not going to cry because mommy is taking a shower, you’re not going to be upset because I gave you the wrong bowl for your cereal, and you won’t be upset because I said goodbye.
You will be experiencing real- life problems and grown-up hurts, ones that a quick kiss, and a hug won’t fix.
This stage will eventually end and I’ll miss every moment of it…
For now I’m going to snuggle you and enjoy you being two!