I have always hated the term "terrible twos", I don't think any child or any phase is truly terrible. I'd call them "challenging twos" with moments of exasperated awfulness. No one said being a parent was all sunshine and roses, but some days it feels next to impossible.
Some days you just don't have a long enough fuse. Some days you're super PMS'd, and after an entire day of "no's" and a toddler, who seems to have forgotten how to speak (unless it is to argue or boss) defies you by digging up an entire pot of basil seedlings and all you see is red. (Okay, maybe not you, but me.)
Luckily, for this particular instance, my husband (and terrific parenting partner) was there to take over so that I could go cry hot frustrated tears and pull myself together. Moms need time outs too, you know.
I'm not sure exactly where I'm going with this, other than to say that if some days mindfully parenting a two year old really kicks your a** and leaves you feeling more than a little worn out, you are not alone. We all have days like those, and all we can do is try our best. Even if that means yelling, shedding a few tears, letting Sesame Street help run out the clock, and hoping the tide changes tomorrow.
Because the thing is, the tide does change. And for all the challenges of being a parent, the rewards are even greater. Like finally getting through to your little one in a way that cuts the arguing down drastically. Like huge hugs, and sweet kisses, and heart warming giggles. Like becoming a much more patient person. The rewards of a thousand tiny victories and few huge ones. Being a parent is part challenge, part privilege. To love and be loved as a parent is the greatest joy my soul has ever known. With that in mind, a few hard days seem a small price to pay.
Here's to being a parent: surviving the terrible and relishing the terrific.
A few more parenting words I enjoyed recently: