My two year old has quickly taught me that there are numerous types of toddler smiles:
There’s the half smirk that is quickly accompanied by a devilish grin, one that says, “I’m about to do something I know I shouldn’t, but I am going to anyway.”
There’s the toothy grin and hesitant giggle that follows, that is trying to be charming to get their way. Because they KNOW they are endearing.
There’s the giant sideways grin that is followed with proud and confident posture that says, “I can do anything I set my mind to. Watch me go.”
There’s the gargantuan lip curl with a half-smile and furrowed brow that says, “I do what I want – what are you going to do about it?” that is just begging us to get irritated.
There’s the adoring smile that looks at you before you put them to bed at night, looking at you with sparkles in their eye that says, “Mom, you are my world and I am yours.”
My toddler is strong-willed, curious, knows how to make me laugh when I don’t want to laugh, and is extremely intuitive. He is inquisitive, artistic, and even makes me go a little ballistic.
The truth is – God entrusted these strong willed, smiling, intelligent little humans into our care and it is both an honor and a privilege to have the title of “toddler mom.”
Is it difficult? Absolutely. No doubt about it.
Do I sometimes end the day in tears, wishing I hadn’t gotten so frustrated? You bet.
But I am also so thankful to have a toddler who helps me realize that I could love and feel this much. For my heart to feel like it could burst when those tiny little fingers are wrapped around my neck or asks to hold my hand.
I’m thankful to have a toddler who can run around and explore the world, is strong enough to throw his playdough across the room, and has eyes that are decent enough to notice whenever I pull out a delicious snack for myself. I’m thankful his ears hear well enough to know exactly when I say “let’s go change your diaper” and he feels the need to run full speed in the opposite direction.
I’m thankful that my son is breathing, eating, and so full of energy that he could run a marathon.
Today, let’s take the time to be thankful for those little smirks – the little challenges that help us become stronger moms who have never loved something so much.
Let us not be so hard on ourselves that we forget to soak in the giggles.
You got this, momma! Keep on smiling, not just to smile, but because we are immensely blessed to have crazy little humans making us want to be better people every single day!
Don’t let those crazy little smirks defeat you – let them remind you of the challenges you have already overcome.