I love my toddlers, they’re remarkable.
Watching them develop, learn and grow is one of the most fun parts of being a parent; on my list it’s my second favourite after bedtime. One day they’re a teeny tiny helpless baby, the next they are running away from you in the car park and giving you a tonne of sass when you try and get them out of bed (you know I’m talking about big Whingelet here).
A while ago, I lamented over on Babycentre about what I would fix if I were re-designing the baby of the future. Now it’s the turn of the humble toddler; these are the things I would design out should I be put in charge of things (you never know).
1) Refusal to eat vegetables
They seem to be hell bent on getting scurvy. Parents around the globe are spending their last bits of energy blending vegetables into bolognese sauce whilst thinking f*ck it, why don’t I just give them a fruit shoot and a chocolate biscuit. The toddler of the future should be less fixated on refusing anything with any nutritional benefit.
2) In fact, refusal to eat anything really
What kid doesn’t like cheese on toast? Mine, when that’s what I have chosen to offer them. Unless it’s mine, obviously.
Honestly, why were they even invented? I have written at length about some of the worst tantrums we’ve experienced, but they are by no means one offs. On average we probably have three tantrums and several near misses in this house per day. And only one of those is me. The toddler of the future should just learn to voice their feelings, talk through them in a calm manner so that a resolution can be reached. That would be perfect.
It’s awful when they’re small, but possibly even worse when they’re not and it almost feels like they are trying to torture you on purpose. No sooner have they started responding to bribery to stay in their bloody beds (I am hoping the small one starts responding to this soon because goddamnit I want my bed back) then suddenly they start having vivid nightmares and waking up at night.
5) Snot… so much snot
A toddler with a cold is so, so grim and yes, as I have mused before, it seems to be a semi-permanent state. Why can’t they just blow their bloody noses?
All. The. Time. Puts my teeth on edge and makes me want to break things. I appreciate not all toddlers whine, but mine do. Boy, do they. As a self-protection mechanism I suggest they at least lower the volume in Toddler 2.0.
7) Potty training
The toddler of the future does not have to be constantly reminded to use the toilet. The toddler of the future doesn’t mind putting down a toy because they’re about to burst and coming back to it three seconds later when they’ve sensibly relieved themselves. The toddler of the future never poos in inconvenient places.
Mess is to be expected when you’re engaged in messy play, painting, crafting, baking… But toddlers seem to be wonderfully adept at creating chaos even when they’re just watching cartoons. There is crap on EVERY surface of the house (including the floor of course) and I have to hoover about six times a day just because of all the crumbs. Any pleas to assist with the tidying are met with tantrums or complaint, unless said pleas are assisted by bribery.
9) Inability to share
We’ve already covered this one.
10) Not listening at all
Do you know how many times I have to ask my toddler to put her shoes on before she does it? Neither do I because she’s never actually achieved this. In order not to activate untold rage in the parent or carer, I wholeheartedly suggest that the toddler of the future be equipped with the necessary brain capacity to not only hear and process requests but also to act upon them before we all die of old age.