Toddlerhood: Surviving with a 2 Year Old

cute toddlerLife with a toddler is so crazy. I am amazed by all that she is learning and stressed by her temperamental outbursts. It is both scary and sweet when she starts copying everything that I do. Life is getting more complicated as we decide about preschool and playdates, while trying to break our own bad habits so she doesn’t pick them up. At the same time, we have to take her toddler tantrums and extreme energy one day at a time. It is exhausting but this time is precious.
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Baby’s Second Birthday!

birthday teddy bear
Anneliese opening her gift from Great Grammy.

WOW! two years have flown by already, and my precious little bundle of joy has grown into a rambunctious toddler. We just celebrated Anneliese’s second birthday, but it was a little bitter sweet for me. Not only is my baby no longer a baby, but we are far away from our family too. Our families were sweet by calling Anneliese to wish her a Happy Birthday and sent plenty of gifts.
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Clingy Baby, Crabby Mommy

The Toddler Terrible Two’s

clingy baby terrible twosWell, I think the terrible two’s have come early for my baby. Lately I have been dealing with a lot of whining and it is about to drive me crazy. On top of the whining, my baby has been needing so much more attention. She wants me to hold her and play with her all the time, and screams when I leave her in the nursery at church.

This is getting very tiresome and making me very crabby, especially since her clinginess has affected her sleep. She wants to be rocked to sleep for a while at night and sometimes in the middle of the night, as well as her afternoon naptime. I am feeling so stressed out and overwhelmed, because I am trying to do my online work while constantly supervising a clingy toddler. As a result, I have slacked off a little on our family meals and household chores.

The combination of interrupted sleep, lack of organized housework and a whiny baby has made my husband unhappy, and I have to listen to him whine too. He doesn’t understand why I am forgetting everything and not getting much done during the day. So I explain in a not-so-friendly voice that I have always been scatterbrained and having a clingy baby only makes it worse.

Needless to say, there has been a little tension in our household lately. I just hope the terrible two’s do not get much worse as my baby / toddler gets closer to that age. For now, I am learning to adjust and become firm in my parenting, as well as drinking more coffee to stay alert.

Dealing with a Toddler

I have learned that my baby is much smarter than I give her credit for. She understands most of what I say now and has moments when she just does not want to obey right away. Once she realizes that she will not get away with disobeying, she is back to being my sweet baby.

If I give her positive reinforcement, she gets very proud of herself and wants to obey more (she loves it when you clap for her). If I ignore her disobedience, she pushes it further to see how far I will let her go. So, I have learned that being firm and giving plenty of praise is the best way to keep my baby from her toddler meltdowns.

Being an irrational toddler, this does not always work, though. Sometimes, she will get into such a terrible fit for no apparent reason that I am not sure what to do. Just when I think I have this motherhood thing figured out, I have another seemingly insurmountable problem that I have to face. I suppose I will just stand strong and wait for the storm to pass.