For a moment there, I was under the impression that it was never going to happen; she would always stay my sweet little girl. But then, almost of the blue, it hit: She was kicking and screaming her discontent at the top of her lungs. It was the mother of all tantrums. That's when I realized the terrible twos have arrived. A bit late, but they were here now with the force of a hurricane.
Every parent hates the terrible twos, hence the terrifying name. I am usually not the glass-is-half-full type of person -- more like the glass is broken and that little water that was in it is now dripping all over my floor -- but even I knew there must be a reason for all that drama. Perhaps I should try to find it in me to be happy we have reached such an important milestone, even though I am contemplating escape routes every time she has a tantrum. I have given this a whole lot of thought, and here's what I've concluded: It's really extremely hard to love the terrible twos, but for the heck of it, let's give it a try.
1. The reign of terror is best released now
At one point, I was looking at my sweet little girl and I caught myself thinking: Sweetie, if you hold all this in all the time, what the heck are you going to do to us once you hit puberty? You'll be spitting fire. No one should be holding discontent in for too long. If she did it for more than 10 years, I'd literally be afraid to go to sleep.
2. Practice makes perfect
Beginning with the terrible twos and ending hopefully with puberty, you slowly pace yourself. You learn as you go along. I mean, if after 12 years of living with an angel one day you woke up next to a demon, you might find yourself completely baffled, too. This way, you have no misconceptions about your kids as they grow up.
3. Tantrums help them let go
Kids are growing up, forming their personality. Yeah, I know it looks ugly -- almost like snakes shedding their skin -- but it does mean they will soon, like in another five years, be more independent and in 10, they will hate to be even seen with their parents. You will finally have the time for all the coffee, dinners with your partner, reading all those unfinished books and doing all your hobbies...
4. It's all downhill from here
After dealing with the terrible twos and the imminent tantrums, there is really not much you can't handle. Nothing can be worse -- not your colleagues, boss or customers, because nobody really will throw themselves on the floor, scream for so long you forget what it was that started it and then, for no particular reason, just calm down as if nothing happened. Besides, even if they did, that's really nothing you haven't seen thus far, right?
Honestly, it's really hard for me to keep a positive spin on this. There is really no reason to love the terrible twos, except for the fact that they will pass. But not as quickly as one might hope. As my eldest proved, the terrible twos can last well into the terrifying threes and frightful fours and so on until you hit puberty. But I am going to keep loving it, because as they say, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.
The post was previously published on coolkidzcooltrips.com.