Toddlers are hard.
They are messy and loud.
They interrupt and have little regard for personal space.
They are grumpy a lot of times and say “no” so often you would think they were paid by the word.
They are extraordinarily creative and curious to a fault.
They are overly active and down-right exhausting.
Yes, my friend. Toddlers are hard, and I am with you.
I see you struggling to get your child to sit still for story time at the library. I see the look of embarrassment in your eyes, feeling that your toddler is the only one not following directions.
I see you in Target trying to quiet your little one’s tantrum without making a scene, worried what others must think of your screaming child.
I see you on the playground trying to wrangle your unwilling child back to the car after a play session, trying to control the tears – both their’s and your own.
I see all of this.
I see, and my heart twinges with empathy.
I see, and I offer a knowing smile or an encouraging word when I can.
I see, and I don’t judge.
Because I’ve been there, too. We all have.
Heck, I’m there now.
I want you to know it’s not you. It’s toddlers. They are adorable and funny and wonderful, but they are hard. So very hard.
Remember that your fellow parents know this all too well. We are not shooting you looks of judgement, but rather looks of compassion and solidarity. Hang in there.
This has been a friendly reminder that you are not alone today, toddler parents. Not one little bit. Please share with someone who might need to be reminded of this, too.