Raising toddlers can be hard work but it’s also filled with moments like these you’ll always cherish…

Taking care of a toddler can be a mentally and physically draining process at times. However, it’s just as rewarding to witness your child acing all their milestones year after year.

Indeed, you’ll see junior morph quickly from the Terrible Twos into a “Threenager”. But before you can wrap your head around these changes, they’ve become a terrifying “Fournado” who plays fast and loose with your house rules.

While most parents heave a sigh of relief when the exhausting toddler years are over, you’ll miss these oh-so-special moments in years to come! Here are a few of them…

1) Cuddles, hugs and kisses

No matter where your tyke goes, you know they’ll run straight into comfort of your arms at the end of the day. Nor is there anything you can do to shake their sweaty embrace. Those big kisses you plant all over their body makes them go into fits of helpless giggles ― and you both just can’t get enough of it.

Those big kisses you planted all over their body would make them go into fits of helpless giggles ― still, you both just couldn’t get enough of it.

2) Their chubby hands and feet

Over time, your kewpie’s hands will change from soft and chubby little palms with stubby fingers to ones that’ll be strong enough to crush soda cans. You’ll also miss your tyke’s tendency to stuff those adorable paws into forbidden places! This is why you use childproofing products to ensure that every sharp corner, knob or cupboard in your home is kid-safe.

3) The way they speak

During junior’s early years, their ability to articulate is limited so, they utter simple words and imitate the sounds you make. The fun begins when as toddlers, they start experimenting with and making up words of their own. While it’s adorable to hear them mispronounce words, it is just as terrifying to hear them repeat a swear word you’ve just muttered under your breath.

4) Reading them stories/Singing lullabies tunelessly

When junior now bugs you for more time on the computer or tablet before bedtime, they used to cuddle up to you on the bed while you read them a book or sang them a lullaby. Nor did it matter that you were out of tune, they’d always drift off to la-la land.

5) Their noisy toys

It’s annoying when your mini-me hogs your iPad to watch a Paw Patrol episode they’ve already seen a gazillion times. What about hearing the same songs ad nauseum from your tyke’s activity gym every time they punch that button? Irritating as these ditties are, you’ll feel a lump in your throat when you hear those songs in time to come.


6) Their favourite stuffed toys

Your peewee’s favourite plushie or comfort object is very important because without it, all hell will break loose at home. In fact, you could say that buying multiples of the same plaything is a pretty smart investment. This way, you can easily whip out a replacement when the object of junior’s affection goes missing.

7) Naptime

Your child’s nap schedule is inconvenient as you and your spouse have to plan your day’s activities around it. But this also means you’ll know that you’ll have time to yourself at certain periods daily. And these pockets of time are fabulous when there are house chores to finish or need to catch up on your Netflix shows.

Toddlers seem to know exactly what they want, when they want it... They also love doing everything on their own ― from feeding and brushing teeth to dressing themselves.

8) Their energy and persistence

From the moment they are up to the moment they nod off, junior will do everything at full tilt. Few workouts can rival the cardio you’ll get from chasing a toddler all day. Nor do these little headstrong creatures take “no” for an answer. If you tell them not to climb on the ladder, they’ll hop on the step stool instead. Talk about being determined!

9) Their confidence/self-assurance

Toddlers seem to know exactly what they want, when they want it and if you don’t know, they’ll happily tell you. They also love doing everything on their own ― from feeding and brushing teeth to dressing themselves ― don't even think of trying to help them, even if the mess they make resembles a war zone. By the way, because they don’t give a hoot what anyone thinks about them, they are perfectly comfortable acting silly. Who doesn’t admire such confidence?

10) Their firsts

While your kiddo will continue to experience more firsts throughout their lifetime, none will be as satisfying as their mastering the ability to stand up, walk and eventually run unassisted. These definitely matter more than knowing when they had their first pimple or met their first girl- or boyfriend.

11) Being everything to them

Unlike your school-going kids, your wee one looks to you for everything — you are their parent, playmate and confidante all rolled into one. While it may be terrifying to know that your little fella is dependent on you for all their needs, you also feel proud that you are involved in raising a healthy and happy kid.

Parenting a toddler isn’t easy, since you can expect lots of draining, dramatic and even heart-stopping moments along the way. But these are totally worth it. After all, toddlers don’t just live life to the full, they are the ultimate entertainers, and this means that you’ll never have a dull moment!

Photos: iStock

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