My friend Jena has four boys and posted this very visual account of a day in her life on her blog: http://4boyz4me.blogspot.com. If you’ve ever taken care of a toddler, you’ll be able to relate!
He’ll want a pair of shoes to go with them.
If you try to distract him, he’ll go over to where he knows they are and start throwing a temper tantrum til you give in and hand him a pair.
Chances are, if you give him his shoes, he’ll sit down and try to put them on the wrong feet but look proud of himself for doing so but you’ll cringe looking at them so help him put them on the right feet.
Then once he has his shoes on, he’ll decide it’s time to go for a walk so he’ll take you by the hand and lead you to the front door. He’ll start pointing and nod his head with a big smile on his face if you stupidly ask if he wants to go outside.
If you try to distract him, he’ll take your pinky finger and bend it in unnatural angles until you scream for mercy while he leads you again to the front door. All while throwing a temper tantrum.
Soon you’ll decide it is not worth the pounding headache that will ensue if you don’t go for a walk so you’ll put your shoes on while he looks on with an air of satisfaction, grab your keys, a bottle of water, and your 6yr old and head out the front door.
Now that you are out the front door, he’ll decide it must be a walk, not a drive, and he must sit in the wagon where he can climb in and out while on the street so he can watch your hair turn grey. If you try to put him in the stroller instead, the neighbors will soon be coming out the front door asking you to please give him what he wants as their ears are now bleeding.
So you’ll let him climb in the wagon.
And chances are, if he’s in the wagon, the 6yr old will want to ride too.
So now YOU are going for a walk while they go for a ride.
So you’ll decide if you are doing the walking, you’ll walk to the produce stand to get some fresh fruits and vegetables for the week. You’ll walk the mile there, laughing and joking with the kids and everyone’s having a good time.
The nice farmer on the way will give your beautiful happy children a big bag of fresh peas to take home.
Then you’ll end up at the produce stand and your toddler will climb out of the wagon and start running around like a maniac so you’ll ask your 6yr old to watch him so you can get the shopping done. So they run around in the back up and down by the plants while you get your vegetables.
And chances are, if you have a family of 6, you’ll buy a lot of fruits and vegetables. And just when you think it’s enough, your 6yr old will beg for just one more item and look adorable and you’ll say "ok" when he sticks the bag of grapes on the counter.
Then you’ll realize there is barely enough room to stick the toddler in the wagon and the 6yr old will have to walk and you are now out of water. So you start heading for home.
And while you are heading home, your toddler will be busy trying to choke himself on grapes which he’s never had whole before so you will be stopping every few steps to bite another one for him until you hand the bag to the 6yr old with the plea of "keep feeding him 1/2 grapes while we walk please"
Then you’ll keep walking until your 6yr old lets out a shriek that let’s you know there is something amiss so you’ll turn around to find that your toddler is now squishing all the bananas while trying to pull one off for himself. So you’ll grab one and give him half and watch as he leans back content for a moment so you start hurrying up trying to make it home before your luck runs out.
And chances are, as soon as you’ve thought of that, he’ll decide he doesn’t want to ride in the wagon any more and needs to get out RIGHT NOW!
And if you try to distract him, he will just keep climbing out while screaming his head off causing all the passing cars to slow down to see if you are actually killing him.
So you’ll give in as the lesser of two evils and make him hold your hand while you pull the wagon with the other and the 6yr old walks beside you.
And if you decide that letting him walk is actually the lesser of two evils, he will make sure to try and prove you wrong as he throws himself to the ground with every other step in an attempt to dislocate your shoulder so you’ll have to let go of him so he can go play in traffic and pick up rocks to choke on.
So you change your mind and put him back in the wagon and tell him to just stay there until you get home.
So he screams bloody murder and at this point you think your head is going to explode and you are ready to welcome the blessed silence that will follow that event.
But then you see your house and you pull up your wagon and your toddler stops screaming and runs into the house to see his other big brothers.
And chances are, as soon as you sit down ready for a long nap, he’ll grab your hand and lead you toward the door because you see, he wants to go for another walk.
(Nope, I’ve never lived through this, never, ever, ever….oh….wait….this was last weekend)