Many people compliment my husband and I and say, “How do you have such well-behaved children?”
My response is often, ” No…we have 4 pretty well-behaved kids and a 2 year old!”
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We were married when I was 23. I turned 23 in December, got married in January, and had our first son in October. Then, I turned 24;) We had our 2nd son just 16 months after our first. But even crazier than this is that we had our 3rd son when our first was just 2.5 years old! For a crazy period of time, I had a 2 year old, a 1 year old, and a newborn! Those who knew me back then, know that I was a very insecure, sleep deprived woman.
Having toddlers can be a challenging experience. It is really difficult when your kids are having multiple temper-tantrums throughout the day and you have no idea what to do! It is even harder when you are comparing yourself to other moms and their well-behaved kids (I often fell into this trap). I just want to encourage moms of toddlers to keep going, keep praying, keep loving, keep training/disciplining and one day you will see the fruit of your labor.
My kids are now 12, 11, 9, 7, and 2. I look at my 4 older kids today and I am amazed at how they have matured. The kids that used to throw major tantrums in their toddlerhood now take such good care of ME. In the past, I was doing everything for these precious little ones and it was hard work. I was exhausted every day. Older moms would say, “Cherish these days because they grow up so fast!” I did not believe them. But sure enough, that wondrous “day” arrived and now my kids are pretty independent. They do most of their homeschool work on their own, they play with each other kindly (90% of the time), they do the dishes and clean up after meals, they fold and put away their own laundry, and much more.
A lesson our Father has taught me over these 12 years of motherhood is that time really does fly by and I do need to cherish these days. Having the 4 older kids has helped my perspective with our youngest child. She is joyful, hilarious, and strong willed. In the past, my kids’ temper tantrums would throw me into a stressed, overwhelmed state. Now when our baby is throwing her tantrums, I laugh and feel thankful. I am thankful that the Father gave me this 2 year old spunky treasure and I look at my older kids and feel peace knowing that this too shall pass.