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A friend of mine recently posted on her social media pages that “Having a 2 year old is like having a blender on full speed – without a lid!” And going by the number of likes, comments and responses that particular post got, it’s that many a mother concur!!! In my opinion she couldn’t have described it any better….yes, it can be quite messy! Literally!!!

To finally be able to put my thoughts into action was very satisfying.

Case in point – I recently repainted my living room walls. The perfect combination of chocolate and cream… I had envisioned this for a pretty long time, and to finally be able to put my thoughts into action was very satisfying.

So you can imagine my utter dismay, when I came home one fine evening only to find my beautiful living room walls interestingly decorated in black…with a permanent marker!! And let’s not mention my dining room table!

I didn’t want to ask where Nyakio’s nanny was when this was happening, because as we all very well know, these little ones can move at lightning speed from one end of the wall to another and at the blink of an eye, dramatic things like these happen.

Potty training “accidents”

Moving away from my wall and tables…..how many potty training “accidents” have we had? Like all over? On my carpet, my duvet, Tumiso’s duvet, Yaani…sometimes all that comes to mind are the words of my good friend who came home to a lovely mess in her kitchen pantry, courtesy of her cute little boy and wondered out loud: “Is the good Lord testing me??”

Here’s the thing though; it’s not like I’ve not gone through this before, I absolutely have! And quite frankly, Tumiso was more of an “artist” than her sister.

But if this is a test, then, I believe I have been passing it one step at a time, one day at a time. And when I reflect, the only way I’m succeeding is by:

One: reminding myself to be patient with her

She’s only 2.5 years old, there’s a lot she needs to learn, and she will only learn with constant, calm and persistent direction, given in love, not in anger.

Two: giving her options

This was really important to me especially for my walls! All she really wants to do is color. So whenever she indicates that she’d like to color, I always tell her “not on mummy’s walls, on this paper”…and she seems to understand it now. Telling her not to write on mummy’s walls without giving her an option only frustrates her, and throws her into a crying fit….which quite frankly, I want to avoid.

Three: praising and rewarding her when she does the right thing

Kids are just like us….when we do good, it feels nice when someone recognizes and appreciates our effort, right? You see that nice warm feeling you get when someone commends you on a job well done? Especially someone whose opinion really matters? Like your boss, maybe?

Imagine, your little person feels the exact same way when they get something right, and you, her mother, the most significant person in her life, notices, praises and rewards her. She may not consistently get it right initially, but don’t get tired….always focus on when baby gets it right. You’ll not only be helping them learn important skills, but by focusing on the positive, you will also be instilling a feeling of confidence and self-worth in this important formative stage.

Oh my word!! I’ve talked quite a bit!! Let me leave it at that for now. But tell me though, what “interesting” things have your little ones done….? You know the sort of things that only look funny in hind sight? How did you handle it? I’d love to hear from you!

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