Pic: “Come on, pooch. We’re gonna miss our bus!”
I don’t know exactly how this came to be, but we have a toddler in our midst (not to be confused with gorillas in the mist – although they make similar sounds). I think I just believed that the Little Mister would be a baby forever. I got used to calling him “baby” and “bubba”. I mean, he’ll always be my baby, much in the same embarrassing way that I still call my 10 year old dog my puppy…just not so much in public haha.
I’m only just coming to terms with referring to the Little Mister as a toddler. I have a TODDLER. It takes some getting used to. Each day he grows into the title more and more, so I guess it starts to roll off the tongue a little easier!
However, I can’t help but be painfully aware of the news stories I keep reading about toddlers. Have you ever seen headlines such as…
“Toddler stays by his parents’ side all day long.”
“Toddler doesn’t get lost at all. Ever.”
“Toddler doesn’t put anything except food in his mouth.”
“Toddler never enters a body of water unattended.”
Yeah, didn’t think so.
However, I do find comfort in the fact that sometimes toddlers go missing only to be rescued by their faithful, furry friends. I’m not talking about that loyal kid Timmy with the inexplicable body hair. I’m talking about dogs. Or puppies as you may still call them because you can’t let go (not that I have a problem or anything)…
All you have to do is google ‘dog rescues toddler’ and you won’t believe the number of stories that come up! This makes me feel good because I have not only one dog but two! OK, so one (who shall remain nameless) would probably run into traffic and teach the Little Mister how to find and eat dead things, but the other (my beautiful 10 year old puppy) would no doubt lead him home when they both got hungry.
Then there was this story. A toddler boarded a bus alone from a shopping complex unbeknownst to his mother and travelled roughly 23km (just over 14 miles) away before being found! Talk about your heart in your mouth!! There were two theories. Apparently he either negotiated roughly 6 sets of traffic light intersections on one of the busiest streets in the city to get to the bus station, or he boarded one bus straight out of the shopping centre, then transferred himself to another one!! I hope he bought a ticket!
Also, there’s such a thing as the terrible twos. I get this really strange feeling that the Little Mister is going to go through this early. God help us. He’s already pointing at things he wants and putting on a show of grumpiness if he can’t have it. When I say ‘putting on a show’, I mean he looks at me for a second (direct, piercing eye contact), then he drops his bottom lip. When I don’t give in, he repeats the eye contact, followed by a crocodile cry. Yep. He’s not even 13 months old yet. Luckily he is usually distracted easily and is naturally a happy go lucky dude, but his ability to retain and remember things is getting a little too good for my liking!
I must be strong, though! This toddler parenting takes some (metaphorical) balls! And we’ve hardly even got started! I ain’t seen nothin’ yet, as many parents of older toddlers would be thinking right about now!
This is a fun time, though. The Little Mister loves to point at things so I can tell him what they are. Right now it’s all about lights and anything on the ceiling, really. Today we have established the fact that there are 3 lights, a manhole, a smoke alarm, 2 framed pictures and a vent in our passageway…about 20 times. I love how curious he is and I can tell he’s saving all these words and memories up so that later he can tell me what they are! A toddler certainly makes you look at the world (or even just your house) in a whole new way. He isn’t bored walking around (and around and around) hand in hand with me for aaaaages. He’s just finding pleasure in the small things – being able to use his legs and appreciating his great company (that’s me). He has the names of sooooo many things to discover. Everything is fascinating – even for the fifty millionth time. I think that’s pretty awesome.
He’s not quite walking confidently yet (he has the gait of a slow moving zombie and each day I am fighting the urge to dress him up as one before taking hours of hilarious video footage), but when he starts to run I shall be tethering him to a dog, while wearing a permanent floatie and perhaps we’ll install some shock absorbers, a radio beacon and some kind of GPS attached to a surveillance camera (so I can tell when he’s eating supposedly inedible objects). Do you think the bomb squad could be on call with their special robot thingies that have the long arms with the grabby bits on the end? You know, in case he’s spotted a mile away eating a plastic bead or something?