When your baby enters into the toddler age, there is a sudden alteration in their behavior. I remember when my daughter turned 1 and started walking right in her 13th month; she had a different perspective on everything in the house. Although she used to crawl and roam around in her walker, but this time…… It was like she got wings to fly. The way she approached the target whether it is the sockets, the decoration pieces, the dustbins, the washroom, everything was so fast and furious for me as a new Mom.
Firstly, I was totally freaked as I had to stop her every minute saying “No, Don’t touch that, its hot, stay away from that, its bad, arghghghgh….”. But then I realized it’s her developing stage and she has to experience everything through her basic instincts of touch and feel. Things were acceptable for a little while.
Then came the rebel mode. It was like we were two different teams or countries fighting against each other, snatching things from each other and exclaiming in our own way. She has to go everywhere I do not want her to go. She has to act every kind of tantrum that I do not like. She has to continue teasing me by doing anything dangerous (in my perspective, not hers) until I get up and get her away from it. She becomes a total rebellion pulling my nerves to the extreme level of frustration and exhaustion.
When I shared my feelings with other parents who already had been through this stage, their reaction would be so normal replying, “its age… children do such things at this age…. It will pass!” Pass?? Okay until it would pass, I might lose my emotional stability and would declare myself a psychopathic because right now I can actually feel things crumbling down in my brain.
During all this melodramatic routine, I sensed how a child interprets everything a mom has to say:
Mommy says, “Let me give you food”. Baby thinks, “No food, I won’t eat at all. I would cry, whine, roll on the floor, burp out food from the mouth and won’t eat at all.
Mommy, “Let me dress you up well”. Baby, “No. I won’t wear socks, I will throw away one shoe, in the bin and other somewhere behind the sofa or bed so that Mommy can have another activity for the day.”
Mommy says, “Don’t touch, it’s hot”. Baby, “Oh it’s hot. Let me touch and see. I will keep touching or pretend to touch it until mommy has to walk from one corner to another to get me away. I can go on repeating it until………. Forever maybe.”
Mommy says, “Eat the food nicely in the plate.” Baby, “Throw the food on the table, rub on the floor, then eat it. It tastes so well after doing this.”
Mommy says, “Do not get your clothes dirty.” Baby, “Rub everything on your clothes. Rub the food that you might not be interested in eating, rub chocolate, and pour water or juice on your shirt. Clean your hands rubbing in your hair. They will nourish well.”
It is like the toddler has made its mind negate everything mommy has to say. She becomes like a total enemy to the child and they run to some other family member for comforting. The whole day ends in this melodrama and the war continues….until both the parties come to peace while having a good night sleep.