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  • Writer's pictureNiamh O'Reilly

Toddlers Can Be Ar*eholes...

You have to wonder what God was thinking when he designed toddlers all the same. I mean, I think he must have been having one hell of a brain fart that night, because what we’ve got is a tiny, upright human who can walk and run at often alarmingly fast speeds. They can wield all sorts of objects, including swiping your knife right off the counter and can pretty much understand everything you are saying, yet the main man upstairs forgot to give them the full skills to communicate back to you and crucially the lack of any scrap of reason or shred of common sense, to know that say running with the fire poker in their hands might be dangerous.

He also hilariously forgot to give them any way to regulate their emotions, save for throwing their bodies on the ground and the ability to produce an ear splitting series of shrieks, shouts and moans.

Yeah, I think he was taking the piss to be honest.

Toddlers are hard work. And you know what, it’s okay to say that. It doesn’t mean you’re ungrateful, or don’t love your children. It just means you’re being honest. And for those of you in the back I’ll say it again, toddlers can be hard work. In fact, toddlers can be downright selfish arseholes at times. They can also be the most adorable angels too, but I'm convinced that at the age of 18 months to 2 years their asshole switch gets turned from off to on and can't be deactivated until they reach about three and a half/four years old.

Everything is an affront to their personal freedoms, as they see them. Those ‘freedoms’ are often things like trying to walk into the middle of a road or run around the house with a scissors in their hands or having a go at the washing pods, which we as grownups know are all bloody dangerous things, but to toddlers, they see it as their God given right to walk into a busy road of cars or wield that scissors as if it was bloody Excalibur and swallow the washing pods as if they were smarties.

None of it is their fault. It’s a fundamental flaw in their design. They are just little balls of rampaging emotion, wrecking balls of feelings going from one drama to the next and we’re always the collateral damage. And it goes from Tasmanian devil, to sweet hugging angel in the blink of an eye.

It’s fucking exhausting.

In fact, I’m starting to think that parenting a toddler is part of some kind of large scale human experiment on measuring the absolute outer limit of patience levels, using parents as guinea pigs or sacrificial lambs.

Luke has just gone 20 months and we’ve entered what I call the ‘game of moans’ phase. It’s a precursor to the full on tantrums of the terrible twos that I’ve tried desperately to expunge from my memory from when the eldest was this age. It was hell... I still shudder inside when I think of the amount of life sucking meltdowns I had to deal with.

But, like it or not, there’s no denying that Luke is now a bonafide toddler and is sporting all of the kick ass attitude that goes with it. Dear sweet baby Jesus, the other day I thought I was going to rip my own ears off and run and hide in the cupboard to get away from the constant fake moaning/crying. It. Was. Epic. And not in a good way.

It was a constant call for attention and to be picked up and the second I put him down, the fake crying began.

At one point, I was trying to make a quiche for the dinner and was unsuccessfully attempting to cut mushrooms with my left hand with him sitting happy in my right arm - which I’m sure by now could go ten rounds with Maywether such is the size of the muscle from all the constant picking up and putting down I do every day.

I was so addled I forgot to line the pastry before I put in the blind baking beans and whacked it in the oven. I only realised 10 minutes later when I took it out and was met with a severely pockmarked pastry case that went on to inadvertently trigger the entire Irish population of trypophobics, when I put it on Instagram… cue lots of rage filled messages about my apparent ignorance of trypophobia.

Pasty fail over, Luke then went apeshit when I didn’t let him have my scalding hot coffee and proceeded to throw himself on the ground after he pointed to an apple, which I gladly gave him, but then felt as though his world was ending because I had to peel it for him… note, if I gave it to him with the skin on, the result would have been the same- world ending anger, followed by giggles and hugs 60 seconds later. Like I said, it’s a cauldron of emotions and it would suck the life out of you.

But hey ho, it is what it is.

Toddlers are often arseholes. It’s not their fault. It does pass and the really insane thing is that even when they do turn into tiny, torture inflicting dictators, we still bloody love them to the moon and back again... I suspect they know this and it's one of the reasons they throw the kitchen sink at us time and again... they know we'll take it and still adore them.

Hmph! Clever little gits aren't they?


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