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My Toddler is a Jerk

My toddler is a jerk.

Now don’t get me wrong, my husband and I love him very much.  After a long struggle with infertility, a tumultuous first trimester that resulted in two trips to the ER (once via ambulance) and an emergency c-section, we often refer to him as our miracle baby, our fighter.

And true to his determination to be a fighter, he is incredibly headstrong.  One day I’m sure his headstrong personality will make him a leader.

But when he’s throwing a fit because I put his apple juice in the wrong cup, it makes him a jerk.

Take yesterday for example.

For lunch, I made a beautiful chicken salad packed with fruit and nuts and healthy as can be.  I served with fresh strawberries and the fancy pretzel crisps you get from the deli.

My toddler ate the pretzel crisps and turned up his nose at everything else.  An hour later, he started crying that he was hungry.  I gave him chicken nuggets and he ate like he hadn’t eaten in a year!

That night I fed him tater tots and ketchup for dinner.  I gave up.

Like most kids, he loves animals.  Whenever we go to a friends, he gets a kick out of chasing the cats.  But he plays rough and sometimes throws toys at the cats.  Sometimes I wonder if I have a future serial killer on my hands.

My husband and I have taught him about stranger danger and how to scream “Help me!” if someone tries to grab him.  We had no idea he would put that lesson into use when I tried to drag him from the toy section in Target.

I’m partly terrified that this stunt will land me in jail under some wild misunderstanding. But on the bright side, at least in jail I can eat a meal uninterrupted and get a full night of sleep while I wait for my husband to bail me out (no rush, honey).

Then of course, there’s the tantrums.  God forbid I turn on the wrong dump truck or Curious George video!

And every tantrum is so full of drama.  My toddler is the king of throwing himself on the floor while kicking and screaming, red face and all.

My personal favorite are the tantrums he throws in public.  I’m a personal fan of ignoring tantrums, so I always stand a few feet away and “enjoy” the sympathetic stares and comments from strangers telling me, “Oh I remember those days!”

But what’s amazing is that he always seems to know right when he’s pushed me to my limits and that’s when he turns back into my sweet baby that clings to my legs and says “Mama, I hold you!”  It melts my heart every time and I no longer wish for the teenage years to hurry up and get here.

After all, teenagers have to be easier than toddlers, right? God help me.

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