If my toddler could tell me off…

I got to thinking today (I know, I know…it’s dangerous when I start to think about things) about how tough it must be to be a toddler. I mean, I’m literally doing things to ruin her day all the time. That’s where the title of my blog came from. She wants to do things, I say no, I’ve ruined her day.

It must suck to be such a tiny human, and be constantly told you “have to do this” or “can’t do that” all day long. My L is only pint-sized, but she’s a strong-headed personality, and she definitely has a mind of her own. Of course I piss her off when I go ruining what she’s got planned.

So I thought to myself – if she were able to eloquently describe to me her thoughts on my “Mommy bossiness” and tell me off, what would she say? Would she have reasons for wanting to do what she does? What would her perspective be?

So here’s my take on it – knowing my daughter as I do, and how hard it is to change her mind when she has it set. I’m going to lay out the situation, my response (and reasoning) and her response (and reasoning) as I imagine it might be.

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Situation #1 I left the room for two minutes, and L took the time to dump half a bottle of baby powder all over the living room carpet, and herself.

My thoughts – “Ohhhhh noooooo, L! We don’t dump that on the carpet! Look, you’ve made a mess. Now we have to clean you up and change you before we go out. Uggh. I don’t have time for this…”

Her thoughts – “Come on Mom, I’m learning here! It’s physics! Look at how it all goes down to the floor, but some of it floats in the air! And look – I dumped it on my feet, then moved and could see my footprints on the carpet! How effin’ cool is that?! Maybe I’ll do it again – look two sets of feet! Holy crap I’m an artist. Why aren’t you loving this?!”

Situation #2 – She asked for a cookie/cracker, so I hand her two. One is broken. Meltdown ensues.

My thoughts“Oh for goodness sake, L, they all taste the same. The whole one will look like that once you take a bite out of it anyway!”

Her thoughts – “What do you take me for Mom, a pushover? This one is broken, and I’m being ripped off! Less cookie than I would have gotten? Hell no! Besides, when a cookie/cracker is broken, it dies. DIES! Who wants to eat a dead cookie! How do I get enjoyment out of seeing that this cookie had its life cut short because the box got shaken up? LIFE IS SO CRUEL!”

Situation #3Wanting to eat the lone goldfish cracker she found under her ass in the car seat, or the raisin she found stuck to her foot after stepping on it.

My thoughts – “Ewwww, L, dirty. Don’t eat that. Yuck, yuck, yuck!” (Secretly thinking – hmmm, will that tide her over till lunch?)

Her thoughts “Sweet, I found that snack I stashed away for later. I knew I’d need this! Wait, WTF Mom, why are you taking that away? I planted this on purpose! It’s food, dammit. FOOD! You’re supposed to eat it. You’re always telling me to “eat my breakfast”, or “come on, one more bite of supper”, and now you WON’T let me eat? YOU ARE SO UNFAIR!”

Situation # 4 – I give L her favourite lunch, and she refuses to eat it.

My thoughts – “Come on L, you love this! You ate it just the other day and devoured it. I know you like it. Why are you pushing it away today?”

Her thoughts – “Seriously Mom, have you ever just not been in the mood for a certain thing? I had this same kind of sandwich two other times this week, and I just don’t want it today. Can’t you learn to make ANYTHING DIFFERENT? I mean, would you want to eat the same things on repeat all the time? No. It’s boring. AND YUCKY! Why can’t you just make me something new for once?!”

Situation # 5 – We’ve just gotten out of the car to go to my Mom’s, and she is unhappy because I make her walk (not run) and hold my hand on the street.

My thoughts – “L, we’re by the road where there are cars. You have to hold Mommy’s hand. It’s dangerous. STOP! I mean it sweetie. No running by the road!”

Her thoughts – “OMG I’M ALWAYS TIED UP! You lock me into the car seat so I can’t move. You lock me into the booster seat at the dining room table so I can’t move. You put me in a stroller so I can’t move. You hold my hand too tightly by the road so I can’t move. I JUST WANT TO BE FREE, DAMMIT! Look, there’s leaves on Gramma’s front yard. LEAVES! They’re yellow, and orange, and green, and I want them all! I want all the rocks in the driveway. I want to run to the neighbours fence to say “Hi Doggy!” to my friend with the waggly tail. Stop with the restrictions and LET ME LIVE!”.

So I guess I have to try and think of things from her perspective for a bit. I think I ruin her day a lot.

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23 thoughts on “If my toddler could tell me off…

  1. Hilarious!! Yes dear you are ruining her life. All of those impulsive thoughts tumbling around in her head only to be squashed by you lol. I hate to think of what my son would say if he were allowed to. Being 10 years old he has quite a repertoire of words I’m sure that I wouldn’t approve of lol

  2. I can totally hear my son with the food thing. He probably gets so tired of things I thought he loved when I feed them to him 4 times per week! But it’s hard to keep up and then they hate stuff half of the time. That would be my argument back to him. Lol

  3. Brilliant! I usually try to see Monkeys side of things, but I still hear myself saying no way more often than I’d like to. I have let him eat the old found-in-the-car crackers though. Is that bad?

    Also I try to come up with workable solutions. Sure baby powder all over the carpet when you need to go out sucks. A lot. But how about one day you fill an empty container with cornflour, and let her take it outside and do what she wants?

  4. This is so true and funny! My daughter’s not quite to the age yet where she can do all of that, but I often think about when she will be. This post made me want to try a day where I attempt not to say “no” to anything (aside from potentially harmful situations) and instead, join her or try to understand/ask her why she’s doing what she’s doing.

  5. Pingback: How To Ruin A Toddler’s Day – If my toddler could tell me off… |

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