She cries almost every night when we put her in the crib and leave the room.
We bribe her not to cry by promising she can watch Thomas the next morning if she doesn’t.
At present she is working through separation anxiety and follows us everywhere, even to the toilet.
We tell her not to kick and she kicks.
We tell her not to throw her food and she throws it.
We tell her not to run away and she runs faster.
We tell her we love her and she responds with “I don’t love you.”
Instead of asking for one drink in the morning she often asks for 3, with just the right amount of ice cubes.
She threatens to take her diaper off.
She will often try and touch her own poop.
She won’t peacefully go inside after being out on the swing until the swing has stopped moving completely.
But you know what?
That’s all part of being 2 and working through boundaries. Learning what is acceptable and what isn’t. Learning what is wrong and what is right.
Learning to laugh.
Learning to cry.
Learning to love.
Learning to live.
I know, I know. Everyone likes to post about the funny moments, the touching moments.
The beautiful moments.
The moments you are proud of and want to remember forever.
We never post about the stressful moments because, to put it frankly, who wants to even go on social media when they’re stressed? Or tired…if I’m tired and have free time, I sleep.
I don’t want you to think I’m a bad parent.
I don’t want you to think my daughter’s a bad kid.
I don’t want you to see the real family behind the social media curtain.
But the truth is, all parents struggle, no kid is perfect, and I’m okay with you knowing we aren’t either. We all need each other and if I’m not open enough to be honest enough about my struggles then how can I ever expect you to be vulnerable.
So here’s to vulnerability, and here’s to parenting.
Here’s to being a father and figuring out as I go.
Because every meltdown, breakdown, throw down is worth it for the prayers, the love, the kindness of E learning to love and discovering just who God created her to be.