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The diva and I struggle with a serious language barrier. She is screaming at me trying to get me to do what she wants. Sometimes I have no clue what she is wailing for and other times, I’m trying to explain to her why painting the cat is not nice. It really is the most frustrating thing ever.

I might as well be talking to a wall because she’s fluent in toddler-ese, not English. Sure, at 21-months-old she knows a lot of words and is very smart, if I do say so myself, but explaining things to a 21-month-old is futile. The following are 10 things I wish I could help her understand.

  1. I don’t speak “screaming.” Use your words. Or be quiet. Or whatever.
  2. One day you will wish you could nap. Enjoy it now.
  3. I only have 2 hands. I’m sorry.
  4. After awhile Mickey Mouse Clubhouse makes me want to stab myself in the eye with a pen.
  5. It’s really sweet that you want to share, but it’s getting harder and harder to choke down soggy Cheerios.
  6. Two comes after one. One…two. Not one, three. And while we’re talking about numbers, you are one, not three. It’s too early to start lying about your age.
  7. Diaper changing would take 20 seconds if you didn’t scream and squirm like a hyena on speed.
  8. Climbing is dangerous, especially for momma’s sanity.
  9. The cat runs from you because you chase after her with “zombie arms” yelling “teeteee!”
  10. “No” isn’t the answer to every question ever.

What would you like to be able to explain to your kids?

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  1. My kids are past the toddler years, but sometimes the communication gap is still there. I’d love to tell them that contrary to what they might sometimes think, there dad and I still do know what is best for them, and no they don’t always get a say in our decisions.

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      I’m starting to get the impression that this language barrier isn’t short lived. ho hum

  2. I love this graphic! Makes me smile every time because it is SO true! Wow, and what you said about the diaper changes? That’s our house! If they would just hold still, we would all be a lot happier and out of there in no time. But instead…weeping and wailing!

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      What is it with diaper changes?? I’m seriously waiting for CPS to show up on my doorstep one of these days!

  3. Mason just grunts and points. In other words, I know how you feel!!! I can’t wait until he can communicate better and stop getting so frusterated

  4. Heather says:

    Love this entry and love the picture. I can totally relate! (especially to #4 and #7)!!

  5. That totally cracks me up! My 6 year old is obsessed with Spongebob and that is the one that makes me want to stab myself in the eye with a pen.

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      Oh good grief! You poor woman. I haven’t introduced Spongebob yet and I’m not planning too. He is so annoying! And I think the theme song might actually be a little worse than the hot dog song.

  6. #10 Also see “I don’t know”
    Me:Why did you do that?
    Her: I don’t know.
    Me: Really you don’t know why you put the cheese in your ear?
    Her: No!
    The Her in question here is 8 years old so hang in there if yours is still a toddler.

    Just a heads up.
    Kids get excited about ice cream no matter the circumstance.
    The first time we had to go the the emergency room….(firsts time) because of a head injury acquired by ruining into a corner of a wall, the nurses gave all 3 kids including the patient with staples in her head ice cream.

    The second time we were off to the emergency room with another head injury (this time from running into a bunk bed) the kids were in a good mood even though I just yelled at them all for horsing around. I had to ask “Why are you smiling?”
    “We are going to get ice cream again….” and this from the one bleeding.

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      Omgosh! That’s hysterical! It’s so funny what kids remember and what “slips their mind.”

  7. That is hysterical. I can laugh now – my kids are grown…but oh my gosh – does it bring back memories! Thanks – and please keep us laughing – we all need it!

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      So tell us, at what age does it get better? And don’t say never, I know where you live. 🙂

  8. Kristin Chadwick says:

    So…um….do you peek in my window’s??!! Because this is quite a bit like my life with my 2.5yr old special needs foster son!! He speaks remarkably well for his age, but it is at sonic boom volume! And for us it is none stop Elmo…that makes me want to poke my brain out or go deaf!! Thankfully the current obsession has moved onto Toy Story 1,2&3 and there is adult humor thrown in!! And since my bio kids are grown now….this in only the 2nd time I’ve had to watch Toy Story 1 &2 endlessly! 😀

  9. #4 #4 #4!!! And also, “hyena on speed” really made me laugh 😉

  10. Oh, soooo funny and I can soooo relate 🙂 Thanks for making me laugh today!

  11. I’d like to communicate that balls aren’t thrown in the house, but mine are way past toddlerhood. They still don’t get it!

    (Thanks for linking this up over at #findingthefunny last week!)

  12. awesome diagram – lol

  13. I love the diagram. The thing that frustrates me the most is they don’t need anything until you are on the phone. Seriously drives me crazy

  14. Great post. I totally relate. I wish my toddler would understand that everything doesn’t belong in his mouth, your can’t eat food off the floor and that the dinning room table is not for mountain climbing. I promise he climbs that thing daily

  15. LOL! That’s funny! And sooo true!

  16. Oh my goodness, it’s like you read my mind!!!! I have the same struggle with my 3 year old toddler. Except she has a speech delay, so she is at the same level as an 18 month old in speech. I struggle trying to get her to understand me and i have these thoughts go through me constantly! Although we need to replace Mickeymouse club house with My little ponies friendship is magic.

    Our cat runs from my daughter too, because she just mauls him! Poor cat. lol. I wish I could explain to her that if she was softer he would let her love him. But soft…that’s a word that hasn’t managed to work it’s way into her understanding yet.

  17. Thanks for the laugh. So far, my boys haven’t really done much of this. <Lie #1! We watch a lot of LeapFrog stuff on Netflix. They're also addicted to PSY's Gangnam Style. I would love to shoot the television at times. I wish they were still small enough to pretend that after unplugging the TV that they would believe it was broken for a few hours!

  18. Oh my Gosh! I’m the Godmother of an 11 month old who stays here on average 6 days a week. I watch her while her mom is in classes at the local college. I almost had anxiety attack tonight, caused by many things, but her teething is making her so cranky I want to stick a hot poker in my ears so I don’t have to hear her screaming over everything. Glad I’m not the only one that can’t communicate that I can’t help it that I have to cook dinner for everyone so she has to stay in the Rugrats pen for 15-20 min. Goodness gracious me. I’ll ship her to you and they can speak toddler ease all they want! 😉

  19. This made me laugh! I have an 11 month old and while she is still in a very sweet baby phase, she is becoming more verbal and expressive (pointing, expressing her opinions/wants, etc) and I can sense the forthcoming communication frustration of her having all these things she wants to share with me and us not being able to “talk” to each other.

  20. My girls are still young, and the biggest thing I would love to explain to my kids is that sharing in the beginning saves a whole lot of belly aching! So tired of the constant screaming at each other. Just glad they don’t hold grudges, lol. they can be mad at each other one minute and best friends the next. Guess I can’t have everything perfect.

  21. I’d like to explain to my 14 year old that wishing something away does not make it magically disappear, whether it be dirty laundry, dinner dishes, Italian homework, or me, repeating the instructions over and over again – JUST DO IT.

    To my 8 year old, I would like to explain that eyeglasses are for wearing, not for hiding daily so that moms can do treasure hunts. Put them in the eyeglass case and on the nightstand. Also, speaking under your breath could cause you to suddenly lose your airflow – mysteriously. Really. I’ve seen it happen. And so will you if I catch you at it again.

    And all of that is in love. The motherly kind. #thatisall #thatisit

  22. You had me at ‘Ptooy gland”!!!!
    OMG I’m dying!! 🙂

  23. HA HA HA!! Oh Gosh, do I remember those days! They are just exhausting! The soggy Cheerios made me laugh out loud! Love it! Hope you have a fabulous SITS day! 🙂

  24. Oh the naps!! My 5 year old still really needs one, but he refuses and then we both end up cranky. My 2 year old doesn’t mind naps, but he has just recently learned how to climb out of his crib, so he is up bright and early for his morning adventures!!

  25. I love this post. The hyena, the zombie arms are so funny. You made my morning. The toy detection cortex is so right. Enjoy your SITS Day.

  26. My kids are 14-21 so most of our communication difficulties involve me trying to get them to understand that I do trust them, it’s the rest of the world I don’t trust. And when I tell you the same thing day after day it’s not because I think you’re stupid but because I’d like you to make it home alive.

    I remember those days, though. Back when I thought if we spoke the same language fluently we’d be better able to understand each other. I suggest you give that idea up soon. It’s not true.

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      The teens are going to be brutal years for me. My daughter is safely playing in my living room. It’s going to be hard when she’s out and about in the world. Big hugs!

  27. Oh those were the days. Thanks for the walk down memory lane and the laugh this morning.

  28. Hilarious! I have two older children and a toddler. I definitely wish they would all take naps. And when there is three begging for juice, or something to eat, or help on homework … ugh! I don’t think kids will realize we don’t have more than 2 hands until they are parents themselves! Visiting from SITS – congrats on your day!

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      Then we get to spoil the grandkids and laugh at their woes as our parents are most certainly doing with us. lol

  29. Preach it, sister!

  30. Coming by from SITS!
    I totally understand where you are coming from…
    I have a 20 month old so you can just imagine, I know each and every one of these things.
    My most frustrating is trying to understand what he wants ….especially when he walks over to the fridge…and he says “night night” which means he wants to go to sleep and wants milk but at times it means other things too. I wish he would just stick with one meaning for the word and not 8.

    On another note, do you still do advertising and public relations?

    You can email me about the last one. Thanks!

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      Hi KG, No I’m not doing any advertising or PR right now. Just staying at home with my daughter. I hope to go back one day though.

  31. My daughter is nearly 10, and I’d like to explain to her WHY she needs to go to school, learn, do math and homework, and otherwise do things she doesn’t want to, before she can do the things she’d like to.

    She also thinks that, because I’m an adult, I’m lucky because I can do whatever I want. Oh honey. Oh, honey. You are in for a very rude awakening if I’m not able to get through to you before you move out.

  32. Hahahaha – LOVE IT!!
    Jay used to say “no” as a baby all the time! We finally started asking him, “No meaning yes?” and that would almost always get him to say “yes”.

  33. ok, you’re scaring me…my son is almost 1 right now, are you telling me that he’s not magically going to know how to communicate like an adult sometime in the next months?? 🙂

    perhaps I’ll have to go the sign language route and teach him a sign that means “DANGER, STOP THAT IMMEDIATELY” since the words don’t seem to be sinking in….

    happy SITS day!

    • Momma on the Rocks Momma on the Rocks says:

      lol! Sorry to say it but no. And when they do learn to talk, they might understand, but not like what you say anyway. They are cute though, right? Lucky for them!

  34. Enjoy those soggy cheerios and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse reruns! Hot dog, hot dog, hot diggity dog! Unfortunately, there’s not much better TV fare out there as they get older, i.e. Spongebob and iCarly. I yi yi!

  35. Hi! Stopping by from SITS.

    So funny and so true! My daughters are both now proficient in English, but have developed selective hearing and tuning me out. So frustrating… I’m a broken record! Oh well. Good thing I have a 23 month that hangs on my every word and loves repetition.


    All work and no play makes mommy a dull chick.

  36. Wow, I can SO relate! My son is 2 and it is definitely difficult at times to make him understand things. Lately, he has started to say “yes” all the time and very clearly, which is such a relief, since he used to say “no” for everything! I love this age, but it can sure be challenging!

    Glad to have found you through the SITS community! I look forward to following your blog!

  37. My son is three (and a quarter if we are counting) and he will frequently tell me he ‘doesn’t have three hands’ when I ask him to carry his own cup & blanket. Because I have six?? Visiting from SITS, following because I think I will like you!


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