Changing of the Seasons

And just like that, my baby became a toddler.

The last three months or so have been my favorite so far. (For those of you with younger ones – that would be ages 18 – 21 months to be precise. Hopefully you will experience the same reprieve.) Teddy was SUCH A GOOD AGE. The high-maintenance baby phase had rounded out. He slept consistently through the night, he was off bottles. His little personality was asserting itself, he was inquisitive and in awe as he became more aware of the world around him. He could walk and babble and was cuddly and SO, SO, SWEET all the time. Sure, his mood will go a little sour when he got overly hungry or tired, but in general he was even-keeled and cute as heck.

Then about two weeks ago, he decided to turn two years old a couple of months early. He became defiant. He started throwing things. He pushes his food away and refuses to eat. He throws fits when scolded. In essence, I suppose, he learned about free will and the wider range of human emotions.

JUST when things had started to get easy. 😉

My dad has told me several times since Teddy was born some advice he got from a neighbor when he was in my shoes and me and my sisters were little  – “It doesn’t get easier, it just gets different.”

How true is that?

I feel like as kids age, you move in outward circles. The first is the smallest and closest – just keeping them ALIVE. Food, change, sleep. The next larger circle? Interacting with others, self-control, regulating emotions and behavior.

Now I’m navigating a WHOLE NEW WORLD of toddler emotions and balancing discipline with understanding. And I could definitely use your advice – how did YOU handle the onset of toddler tantrums? How do you communicate right and wrong to someone who barely understands human language? Did you institute a time-out chair? What words do you use to communicate something was unacceptable?

Luckily, this wonderful video showing a dad being a BOSS at toddler discipline just went viral. So I’ve been able to watch and learn. (Way to go, dad!!!)

But I am curious to hear more techniques. Please comment and share!!!

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