Dressing a toddler each morning feels like you’ve been tasked with dressing a crab, forced to get a sock over each of his 10 legs without him scampering away. And the crab keeps taking the socks off as you put another on so eventually you just give up and sneak the socks on at breakfast while he is being distracted with French toast sticks and syrup. Finally, the crab looks down and realizes you didn’t put Mickey socks on him and you have to go through the entire process again.
Working with a toddler who is potty training feels like working in a barn, having to clean up after the animals. Except in addition to cleaning you also have to constantly bribe the horses and cows with M&M’s just to get them to sit on the potty and hear them insist they just don’t have to go. And then you have to inevitably clean up the stall a mere moments later after the barn animals have pooped their pants while standing there coyly smiling at you, still chewing on their M&M’s.Helping a toddler into the car each morning feels like you’ve been told to guide an elephant into a car. But this elephant wants to wear rain boots instead of sneakers and keeps running away from you until you just have to carry him out of the house and pray he’ll let you put his sneakers on in the car. And once you get the sneakers on, the elephant insists on strapping himself and starts getting frustrated when he can’t do it so starts kicking and flailing around when you try to help. Oh, and the elephant has an older brother who has only four minutes to get to school before he has to sign in late with the office.
Meal time feels like you’ve been tasked with feeding a rabbit to eat. But instead of eating only carrots, they prefer to gnaw on chocolate, and when you insist they have to eat a sandwich first they spend the next twenty minutes jumping around on all the furniture. Finally, you come to a mutual agreement that the rabbit will eat the sandwich if he gets to make it himself, but as you hand him his little yellow Gerber knife to spread the peanut butter, he insists he will only use the blue one, which is dirty in the kitchen sink.Bath time feels like you’ve been solicited to give a whale a bath, because how could that much water end up splashed on to the floor from just one little child? And the whale insists on putting more soap on his hair as soon as you’ve rinsed it off. And wants to be washed with a blue washcloth. Only blue. And the whale refuses to get out of the tub, even after all the water has gone down and you’ve begged and pleaded with the whale that it’s not a particularly smart idea for him to just lie in an empty, cold tub with no water.
Getting a toddler to bed feels like you’ve been asked to get a school of fish into bed. Fish that need more water than any other fish you have ever encountered in your whole life. Fish that are drowning in the huge pile of stuffed animals they demand be left in bed with them.
You can follow mom-fiction on Facebook and Twitter.