My 20 month old and I were on the sofa watching Peppa Pig the other day when she suddenly gave my leg a little push and shouted:
"Off Mummy. Off Sofa Mummy".
And do you know what I did? I said "OK darling", got right off and lay on the floor.
Similarly, I often find myself giving my little toddler snacks when she demands them, searching everywhere for the elusive missing blue crayon because she wants it and basically doing anything and everything to please her/stop a tantrum.
Well do you know what? Enough is enough!
I am a grown woman of 35 years old. I am strong- minded, generally don't take crap from anyone and yet I am letting myself be bossed around by a rather feisty, very small child. How did this happen? Is it the fear of a tantrum? Is it because I wanther to be happy and will do anything to achieve this?
In many ways I think that my inability to say no may root from the scarily speedy transition from her being a baby to becoming a toddler. When our little ones are smaller we feed and do pretty much everything else on demand and then out of the blue, they know their own minds that little bit more and seemingly start to test you and push the boundaries. Coming to terms with this is hard and it is even harder to say "No" and see your child crying.
Anyway. Last night we once again had a "Mummy off sofa" moment and I looked her in the eyes and said
"No. Mummy is not moving. Mummy is the boss"
"No Mummmmmmy", she said. "Mummy OFFFFFFFFF".
"Mummy is staying in the sofa. Mummy and Poppy can sit on the sofa together", was my reply.
And do you know what? Instead of the expected tantrum, she nodded her head in agreement and cuddled up to me.
If I carry on giving in to her every whim and fancy, there is no doubt about it, I'm going to create a young person who always expects to get her own way and this is not what I want. As everyone always tells me, children need boundaries. In fact, they supposedly thrive on them and they make them feel safe. In fact, something tells me that the odd tantrum is going to be good for my strong-willed little girl.
From now on I will always try and reason with Poppy but if this doesn't work (which it's bound not to from time to time) I'm going to wear the trousers and put my foot down, tantrum or no tantrum.
This Mama is no longer going to be ordered around by a 20 month old. From now on I am officially the boss!