My oldest toddler is lovely. She is smart and kind and funny. However lately she has decided to try out being eh.. not so lovely. At first I just thought she was tired. Then I thought maybe the terrible two’s had descended a little late (she was two in July). But still the tantrums continued. She didn’t want to share with her sister. She cried and stamped her little feet. She said “NO!” to everything. I decided that we needed to be strict on her. “You have to share with your sister” “Mammy said coat on now” A little bit of structure and not taking any nonsense. I upped my strictness as she upped her tantrums. And I didn’t like being that Mammy. I guess I was just tired and not really thinking.
Yesterday it dawned on me. She is only 2! What on earth am I thinking? I’m treating her like an eight year old when she is really only a baby. So I’ve stopped. I’ve given her extra hugs, I’m praising everything she does well again. I’m being patient and giving her time. I’m treating her like my baby again and she has calmed right down.
She missed the sibling rivalry when her sister was born, she was only 16 months old so really she barely noticed. Now I think she has started to notice that her sister is getting babied more than her. That her sister is let away with more, isn’t given out to as much. Kids really do notice everything. So we have decided to give her some big girl things that are just for her, special markers, a “cleaning” spray to help Mammy. Things that her little sister is too small for, something she loves “No, baba, you’re too small, this is only for big girls”.
So as much as I hate them growing up, at least there is this: They will always be my babies, no matter what age they are.