Becoming “That” Mom. What I Was Never Told About Having A Toddler! by Vicky Dal Molin
I became one of those mum’s this past weekend. You know the ones that you see in the department store or supermarket, their child throwing a tantrum of a lifetime throwing themselves around the floor. And it shouldn’t have surprised me really but the looks that I got as I tried to drag my 18 month old through the store – while he flailed about screaming as loud as I’ve ever heard him scream. And I wanted to scream at all those judgmental people looking at me…. “yes I’m a horrible mother… I took my child out rather than pay $20/hour for a babysitter so I could buy some much-needed essentials and I have refused to allow him to climb and stay in the freezer with the frozen vegetables (which is exactly why he decided to start the scene in the first place) while I continued to shop”.
Now I must confess….. I remember when I was pregnant visiting my family in Australia that I saw a girl throw what I thought was the most brilliant tantrum on her mother and I turned to my mum and said something along the lines that she should better discipline her daughter. Granted her daughter was probably in the 6/7year old range but I wish now I had gone up to her and patted her on the back! She didn’t cave – she didn’t stop the stares from us strangers by agreeing to give her daughter the chocolate bar she so desperately seemed to want.
I didn’t cave either….. for all of 30 seconds until he was on to the next item he must have. So there I was trying to coach my son through the store while he refused to be carried or ride in the car while carrying a jumbo box of honey nut cheerios I had absolutely no intention of purchasing. Of course at that point everyone was watching as my son struggled to carry the box which was almost as big as him (probably more judging… she allows him to eat those!?!?).
Why did I feel the need to justify myself (even if it was just to myself). When did the world get so judgmental? When did I start caring what the world thinks? And why didn’t anyone warn me about all this?
So this week I thought I would cover the topic…. What people didn’t tell me about having a having a toddler (boy) and what I wish they had.
- You become “THAT” woman. The one you always looked at thinking…. Did she seriously have to bring her kid to a supermarket… he/she obviously wants to be elsewhere.
- Your kid becomes “THAT” kid. The one vying for tantrum of the year. Flinging their little bodies around and screaming as loud as humanly possible… all the while making people look at you like you’re torturing the poor child.
- Destruction is in every boys DNA. Fortunately mine cleans up after himself after he manages to destroy whatever it is he’s smashing. Now I understand his infatuation with drums.
- Boys are gross. I get some of the best tantrums from my son just walking towards him with a baby wipe. He seems to know ….. she’s coming for me and no way is she cleaning my face/hands/clothes.
- Terrible twos? Try Terrible 16 months! I didn’t even get the whole 24 months to enjoy. Of course my son is a master at making it seem he’s the sweetest, most well behaved angel on the planet (already)! If I get asked one more time from someone “is he always that happy” – well guess they missed the supermarket performance… perhaps I will record it one time and just show them (yep I’m “THAT” mum too… the one always taking/posting photos [of adorable happy well behaved son] and posting on FB/Instagram/NameYourSocialMediaApp). #yepthatmum #Ihearthashtags
- You will need a thesaurus so you can come up with different ways to say “no” or “don’t touch that” or “don’t put that in your mouth” just so you don’t go stir crazy repeating No over and over and over again. No wonder “Nah” is one of my son’s favourite words to throw back at me.
- If it’s not a toy they will make it a toy. Toilet paper roll, new decorating tool! Swiffer Duster – beats the $200 train set apparently (then followed with beating of the train set with the Swiffer duster).
- You will no longer EVER drink a hot cup of anything. Or eat a hot plate of anything. Sleep in! Use the bathroom alone.
But all that said….. those little boys sure do love their mum’s and I sure do love my son – tantrums, dirty faced and all. It’s a special bond you share with a son (I assume that…. I do after all only have one child) and one I wouldn’t trade for anything.