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Family dynamics

06th Oct 2023

Five things parents of toddlers should just give up hope on

Aisling Keenan

Your home is no longer your sanctuary, my friends. Here are some things that parents of toddlers will have to wave goodbye to as their little ones wreak havoc push boundaries

Pre-children, I was a neat freak. Now? I prefer to think of myself as a reformed neat freak – I am no longer even neat adjacent. And everything – yes, everything – is mysteriously sticky.

What were the first things I had to depart with as a mother to a toddler? Here’s my list. Read it and weep (like I did).

Spotless floors

Or spotless anything, actually. Accept that those pristine herringbone floors are a thing of the past. Embrace the faint smell of gone-off yoghurt. Tidying as you go, while a worthwhile endeavour that will benefit you at Heaven O’Clock (aka bedtime), sometimes is just not an option. Make like Elsa and let it go. 

Perfectly coordinated outfits

The sooner you let go of the idea that your toddler will always be dressed in matching and clean clothes the easier your life will become. They will find a way to be messy and dirty and disheveled no matter what. I sent my daughter to her grandparents’ yesterday in socks that didn’t match and a dress that was two sizes too small – she didn’t care, they didn’t notice, judgement be damned. Am I a bad parent? TBC.

Uninterrupted phone calls

Understand that uninterrupted phone conversations are a serious luxury. Expect random background noises, interruptions, and impromptu appearances during your calls. “I was just wondering if I could book an appointment with you for… yes honey, your banana is lovely… Shellac nails on Thursday evening?” Sound familiar? Yes.

Immaculate home decor

I absolutely LOVED my living room, pre-baby. My whole house, while a work in progress, was generally tidy and something that I would happily capture in the background of Instagram Stories without hesitation. Now? I have to carefully select the one tiny corner of the entire house that’s not littered with stickers, toys, empty food plates, sippy cups and cuddly toys. Instead of looking like a Harvey Norman catalogue home, my gaff now looks like a Smyth’s catalogue.

Things being kept together

I bought a pack of 26 Twistable crayons the other day. There are three left unbroken. There are ZERO still in the container. And there are more than 20 on the floor. Likewise the play and learn book I bought – the entire velcro alphabet is missing. The little velcro shapes? I keep finding them down my couch. One was even stuck to the dog the other day. Nothing will be kept together ever again and I should make my peace with that now before I lose MY marbles somewhere in this place.