“Mommy, what does ‘new year’ mean?
“Mommy, what does ‘time’ mean?
Toddlers ask the most thought-provoking (also extremely annoying) questions. How do I explain to M what new year and time mean? She’s just two and a half! She sprung these questions on me like a pop quiz and I was like…”ummm, potato?” So for the last couple of days, I’ve been wondering how to answer her questions in a way she will understand and hopefully, sate her curiosity.
But, do you see how she makes me a better person? She constantly challenges my creativity by asking me these questions. There’s so much I learn just by observing her going through her day. Why do we lose that wonderful outlook on life that toddlers have as we grow older? Life Lessons from a toddler? I say, Absolutely! They are some of the wisest people around.
So here goes –
1. Keep yourself busy. Always. Boredom is not in her vocabulary. At least not yet. I know things will change once she’s older but right now, she makes the best of every waking minute. Banging on pots and pans, peeling the paper off her crayons and trying to taste them, drawing on the walls, making a mess, but she’s busy. Apply that to the adult world and bingo! an instant cure for all those negative thoughts that show up uninvited.
2. Always Always Always say Yes to candy and cakes. Because, YOLO! You Only Live Once!
3. Say No and don’t feel bad about it! Well, she says no to most everything and it’s really frustrating, but if she doesn’t want to wear a particular dress or eat something she doesn’t like, she will not do it. My daughter teaches me to say a resounding and emphatic No to everything I don’t want in my life. No explanations, just No. Because No is a complete sentence.
4. If you’re unhappy and you know it, cry it out. The uglier the cry, the better. Don’t hold back. It the only surefire way to get rid of resentment and emotional baggage.
5. Be goofy wherever and whenever you feel like it. Break into a jig whenever you feel like it. M is great at that. I know I’ll be called crazy if I just break into an impromptu dance at the airport, but I do enjoy making silly faces with her. The world these days is so rough and there’s so much sadness and distress everywhere. If we all could be goofy and silly with our toddlers, the world will be a slightly happier place.