When you are faced with tantrums, toilet disasters and messes on a daily basis, the idea of adding a new baby to the mix can seem crazy.
You may even find yourself looking at your toddler, questioning if you really are ready to do it all over again.
Thankfully there are also plenty of magic moments to remind you that being a parent is pretty awesome.
Having two children is easier than having one right?
Well this is the mantra (or delusion) I am choosing to live by right now as I plan my son’s super hero birthday party and countdown to my baby girl’s arrival.
There are plenty of testing moments where I ask myself, ‘Are you really ready to do it all again?’ Such as these toddler moments that could easily be billboards for contraception.
This is hard work people! As if the increased laundry situation isn’t bad enough, finding puddles and piles of poop around the house is enough to tempt any parent to raise the white flag. Who wants to do this and change copious amounts of newborn nappies at the same time?
Toddlers provide very real and loud reminders of exactly what those sweet little newborn bundles can become. Yes, that’s right, the child rolling around on the floor shouting at you and trying to hit you because you dared to open their banana, used to fit in your arms as you rocked them to sleep and sung lullabies.
Cots, prams, play pens can only contain the little people you create for so long because once they are on the move all bets are off. Your toddler will remind you of this every time you let your guard down so beware of baby-made messes. A little independence goes a long way and, when it comes to toddlers, this can mean mass destruction including anything from Sudocream covered carpets and crayoned walls to even poop finger painting.
Once toddlers can really talk, the sweet ‘mumma’ and ‘dadda’ moments take a back seat to a brutal honesty born from their endless curiosity. Here’s a very real conversation I had with my son recently:
Son: Mummy, why is your tummy growing bigger?
Me: Because there is a baby growing inside (I can hear the collective ‘ahhhs’ but wait for it…)
Son: Oh okay, and are there babies in your legs too?
BAM…there it is! Who wouldn’t want another pint-sized person to point out where caving to pregnancy cravings can get you.
It is amazing our armed forces and police departments aren’t recruiting toddlers for their incredible interrogation skills. If their questions are not curly enough, then the sheer amount of questions they ask on repeat can amount to torture.
Why do we have to eat fruit?
What is it good for us?
Why are bananas yellow?
Why do they grow like that?
Why do we take the skin off?
Why does the skin taste yucky?
Why aren’t you eating a banana?
Why are you eating an apple?
Why are some apples red and some apples are green?
Why are you eating a red apple?
Why aren’t you eating a green apple?
Why are you eating the skin?
And then there are these moments…
The trying moments may be plentiful when you have a toddler but, thankfully, there are many magical moments that somehow hold much more power.
Without asking and often when you need them the most, your little one will plant a big smooch on you with so much intention your heart will burst. Who wouldn’t want to double that?
Whether it is your birthday, Mother’s day, Father’s day, Easter, Christmas or just a Tuesday, receiving a card that has been handmade with every resource at their disposal and as much creativity as their little minds can muster, is a monumental thing. With each one, you’ll soon realise this phase will pass, so now is the time to savour it… and look forward to when your next little one takes up craft.
Toddlers are tiny little sponges and if they can’t find the words they will use whatever they can to express how they feel. Personally, this has made me the receiver of many flowers picked from the garden by my son who says he likes ‘to make mummy smile’.
Quiet time spent reading with your toddler can be oh so rewarding. My son is extremely active and hard to pin down for a moment but, if I find the right book, he is glued to every word. Over time there is this wonderful sense of achievement when he begins reciting certain passages back. I wouldn’t trade more moments like these for anything.
How did you decide you were ready for another baby?