Toddlers, oh toddlers. As I commented to the cashier at the grocery store today, they are very much like Chicago weather: wait five minutes and their mood will change. Despite the moods, the tantrums, the noise and the messes, toddlerhood may be one of my favorite stages.
Five reasons why toddlers rock:
1. They remind you that the world and everything in it is amazing and awesome.
Try to walk around the block with a toddler. What would normally be a five minute walk is now 20-30 minutes as they delight in every thing in their path. What’s this rock? Look at this flower! What’s that sound! You can’t help but stop and smell the roses when you have a toddler in tow.
2. Watching them learn is magical.
There is nothing like watching a child learn to do something. And while I love seeing my older kids learn a new skill, there is something so magical about toddlers figuring something out. Maybe it’s the pure joy on their face when they realize that the grunt they made translated into something meaningful to you. Or maybe it’s just that it’s so new, to go from crying blob to learning being. I don’t know but it will always make me smile.
3. They say the best things.
Honestly all the best kid quotes come during that 2- 3-year-old older toddler stage. Even when they are just parroting back what they hear older kids say, it’s adorable. Don’t believe me? Listen to a toddler say “actually” or read Honest Toddler and try not to laugh.
4. They are the manifestation of self confidence.
As my friend Terah put it, they are “Uninhibited when it comes to style. Like working a costume or dressing up in public, or wearing purple stripes and orange polka dots at the same time with confidence and spunk!” It’s a lesson we could all use; to wear (and be) what we want without worrying about what is “in” or what others will think!
5. They teach us more than we will ever teach them. From some of my favorite writer friends:
Sarah - They remind you that there are things that are much more important than schedules and cleanliness (when you are patient enough to listen).
Hyacynth - They are propagators of perspective. My toddlers have innocently put things into perspective for me so many times. I was telling my husband how angry I was about something one evening, and my toddler wandered over and said, “Mommy, let go of your anger; it's more fun to be happy.”
Jen - Toddlers see the world in pure innocence. They don't have hate or prejudices already in their souls. The world hasn't made them bitter or jaded and they see everything with fresh and eager excitement and curiosity. And they are they provide you with ultimate forgiveness, even when you feel like a pretty poor excuse for a mom at times. They are the epitome of unconditional love.
Sarah - Toddlers love you unconditionally, even when you smell bad. Which is a good thing because they are the reasons you a) smell bad and b) don't have time to shower.
Toddlers - love them or hate them? What would you add to the list?
Melissa is mom to 4 kids and 2 angels. She chronicles the sticky bits of motherhood at Peanut Butter in my Hair.
See more of Melissa's stories here.
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