Those tricky toddler days

Toddlers. I’m sure there are a thousand memes about toddlers, tantrums and surviving them.

I’ve done these years 4 times already… though no two children are ever the same. I’m definitely a different parent to the one I was when I first became a Mama.

Far more relaxed, far more knowledgeable and far more understanding.

Patience though is something I have to work on. People often comment that I must be super patient having 5 children. In some respects, I’m finding it harder to be patient with my fifth than with my first.

Having gone from being out of the baby/toddler days to being thrust back into the middle of it was hard. From having children who could get dressed/occupy themselves for short periods to a baby and now toddler who demands my attention non-stop was tricky.

Last week we had ‘one of those days’. Oren is sweet and loving.. .and very strong-willed. He knows what he wants and he will not be swayed otherwise.

In the kitchen, making crispy cakes for a Halloween Party with friends we started butting heads. I’d bought Halloween Sprinkles… he wanted the Christmas ones. I tried to reason {he’s 3!!!!}, tried to just put my foot down, but he was not changing his mind.

Eventually I realised that this was less about him and more about me. Why was I so adamant that we had to use only the Halloween sprinkles?! Why was that so important to me?

So I took a deep breath.


And got out the Christmas Sprinkles.

Sometimes we get stuck in our own decisions as parents, caught up in shoulds and musts instead of seeing the world through the eyes of our toddlers.

I don’t want to be {and am not} the type of parent who tells them what to do. I’m not their boss.. I’m their guide. Here to help them figure out the world, be true to themselves and learn all they need so one day they can spread their wings and fly.

If they want to put Christmas Sprinkles on Halloween Cakes, who cares?! If they want to wear their jumper back to front, what’s the harm? If they want to eat Pasta for breakfast – why not.

Even five children in…. I’m still learning lots about myself. Doing the work to break the patterns. Re-parenting myself as I parent them. Seeing that my anger stems from triggers, and working to unpick what those are. Always apologising when I’m wrong. Explaining to them and treating them as equals who have a voice.

My best advice when things are tough? Take a deep breath. Ask yourself what is going on? Why are you feeling triggered/angry/overwhelmed. What can you do differently to change the situation?

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