This is my 100th post! I’ve been thinking about what to write about for this milestone and I have decided to go back to basics. This post is dedicated to the Toddler: who he is and how he talks at this moment in time. Thanks for being such a wonderful protagonist, S!
The Toddler is asking a lot of questions at the moment. He doesn’t ask “Why?” yet, although he does understand when I ask him for reasons, like: “Why are you in time out?” The answer: “Kicking. Hitting. No sunscreen.” He mainly uses questions to wonder aloud and make choices: “Banana, or apple? Which one I like, Mummy?” His favourite type of questions are rhetorical ones. I tell him we are going to a party, and his response is: “Going….. Gran house? Going…. children’s centre? Going…. cafe? Nooooo, going party!” This gets a little tedious sometimes when used to prolong bedtime stories, every page taking three times as long because we need to go through all the things that are not on the page: “Is a candle? No. Is a ribbon? No. Is a bird? No. Is a button? No. Is a apple!”
The Toddler is making some more adventurous sentences. He will now thank people for something. Daddy took him out for a spin in our new car and then had to go to work. The Toddler waved him off shouting: “Bye bye Daddy! Thank you little drive nice car!” He also surprised me at dinner time by wanting to pack up half of his tortilla. When asked why, he said: “Bewaren voor in de trein.” [Save for on the train] We weren’t planning to go anywhere by train, but he was very insistent and I wasn’t allowed to even put it in the fridge. He was saving it for on the train.
Parenting comes back to haunt you
It does. Like when Daddy is cooking sausages on the barbecue and gets told with firm insistence by the Toddler: “Daddy! Don’t touch a barbecue! Really hot!”
Or when you say: ” Come on, enough TV now. Let’s play Doodlebugs!” and your toddler replies: “Nog niet, mama. Strakjes.” [Not yet, Mummy. In a minute.]
A tentative start has been made on potty training. The Toddler is not too bothered about letting us know when he needs to go yet, but will rush to follow you to the toilet if you announce that you need to go. On arrival in the bathroom he will ask: “Kleine WC of grote WC [small toilet or big toilet], which one you like, Mummy?” Then, he wants to peer into the toilet to observe and comment on the proceedings (argh!), and will ask afterwards: “Lekker gepoept, mama?” [Had a nice poo, Mummy?]
My favourite of his investigations into biology, however, is his research into breastfeeding. He knows this is called ‘voeden’ in Dutch and that your nipples are involved. One day, he lifted up his t-shirt, pointed at his nipples in turn and said: “Eén voeden, twee voedens.” [One feeding, two feedings.] Then he asked me in Dutch: “S feed baby?” I explained that only Mummies could breastfeed. He thought about that for a minute, and then wanted to know: “S feed baby tomorrow?”
For one hundred posts, I have been referring to my son as “The Toddler”, and I suppose he still was one when I started. But I look at him now and he doesn’t toddle anymore. He walks, studiously holding on to the buggy, squeezing through tiny gaps because he MUST be next to the buggy and go through doorways at the same time. He runs, round and round in circles until he is dizzy and falls down on the floor giggling. He jumps, higher and higher on everyone else’s trampolines as we don’t have one. He climbs, clambering up and down higher and higher ladders, stairs, climbing frames, over the edge of things, into the bath and out of his car seat. He crawls, to show his little sister how it’s done.
He is not a toddler anymore. He is a child. The Baby, cruising along the furniture, taking shaky steps holding onto our hands: she will be the toddler soon.
It is time to Future Proof my blog, and I would like to take this opportunity, in my 100th post, to give my children new pseudonyms. From now on, and to cover all future developments, they will be The Boy and The Girl.