There comes a moment in every parent's life when their toddler's development begins to occur at a rapid fire pace. It’s quite unbelievable really, not to mention sobering, when you witness how many skills per day they pick up, especially considering how many new (ahem, few) skills we pick up as adults – um, one or two a year at best. In fact, the last skill I probably acquired was learning how to put on my make-up properly and I’ve been on this planet for decades.
When it comes to toddlers, obviously, the skills are coming fast and furiously. It gets to the point where you put them in bed at night, and when they wake up, they rattle off three new words at the top of their lungs, and can suddenly climb up to the top of the jungle gym without any assistance and you missed the steps when you described how to (or not to do) this. In fact, the second the King wakes, he looks at me and says a variety of things in his uber babble like he's just discovered his tongue.
At the moment, the King’s favorite new word is truck and the number two in Polish (he likes to count using the same number over and over, it’s pretty darn cute). He of course cannot pronounce the –TR- in truck properly so of course it sounds like f*ck. [This is not my doing, even though it is one of my favorite words of all time]. And as he absolutely adores trucks, he shouts this new word at the top of his lungs all over the house, in the stairwell – which has a great echo and truly delights the neighbors – and of course in the street every time a truck passes. There are a lot of trucks in our hood, so you can imagine the delighted looks we get, especially from other parents. Of course, determined not to be known as the trash-mouth mother that drops F bombs around her kid, every time the King screams f*ck, I have to chime in with what a lovely truck it is, oh how we love trucks, TRucks are so marvelous, and I end up sounding like a nauseating child’s TV presenter as we walk around the neighborhood.
The other surprising benefit of rapid toddler development is that suddenly these little creatures that were once so hazardous to their own health (who are we kidding, they still are) now can actually help you accomplish things - with the right guidance of course. This isn’t always a smooth process, but I’m willing to put in the time to get the results I’m after. The King not only likes to work the dust buster – and is darn efficient I might add - but he is obsessed with putting away groceries and organizing my shoes. God I love this child. Not to mention, he’ll carry our shopping bags for us, and put the trash in the bin – not to mention every other object he can get his hands on; we’re still working on this one. I’m currently trying to hone his skills to empty the dishwasher, find his father’s keys, and scrub the toilet. But these tasks may be a few months out.
The other thing you start to notice is that your child now understands every single word out of your mouth - utterly terrifying. For instance, when we even say the word nap or sleep, he looks at us bug-eyed and takes off running for the hills. Or he hysterically thinks that if he lies on the sofa and buries his head under a pillow we are not able to see him and carry him to his cot. [Why oh why does it take us so many years to develop a profound love of sleep? Ah the cruel irony of life].
Anyway, we’re off now to troll construction sites and hurl out f******ck every time we see a digger, dump truck, roller or delivery truck. Never a dull day around here, that’s for certain.