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Happy ValenToddler Day

A Twenty-Three-Month-Old's Take on Being Mama's Valentine

By Sirena Carroll - The Blind Single MomPublished 2 months ago 5 min read
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"Photo supplied by author.) Twenty-three-month-old Gabriel stands in his Valentine's Day outfit, the word 'love' printed upon the chest.

Anyone who heard you ask me to be your Valentine knew I wasn’t actually being given a choice. It’s okay, though. I’m the best little man in your life! Your desire to show me commercial affection on the fourteenth of February is entirely understandable.

While writing this article, Valentine’s Day is two days away. I don’t want to hear it if Vocal doesn’t post this until all the conversation hearts are on sale at Walmart. I tried writing this article sooner. Instead of scolding me for opening the laptop and reconfiguring power settings while you callously abandoned me so you could pee alone, you should have presented me with a blank Word document.

See what happens when you put your bladder before my blog posts?

So, the big red day is two days away. Two is the pivotal word here. I’ll be two on March 3rd. This means I’m changing, and I’d like to enlighten you regarding my Valentine’s Day affections.

Consider yourself forewarned.

Distributing the Love

(Photo supplied by author.) 23-month-old Gabriel, looking thoughtful, is clad in a striped shirt with a red emblem, blue trousers, and snug brown boots that seem perfect for an exploring toddler. His dark hair falls softly around his ears and frames a round, chubby-cheeked face. A blue balloon floats upward from a loose loop bound about his right wrist. Behind him, the playful backdrop of a musician-themed mural with a guitar adds a touch of whimsy to the scene.

Thank you for my new Valentine’s Day getup. It’s stretchy and comfortable in the style you know I appreciate. I love it so much that I fully intend to distribute tonight’s meal evenly between the shirt and pants.

Don’t get upset; you’re always telling me to share. I suppose you’re concerned about pizza sauce stains on my new thematic ensemble before you can show me off at daycare on Wednesday. In that case, I present you with two options you should have considered.

  • You should have called the restaurant a month ago to make a reservation before they were booked.
  • You should have bought a backup outfit.

Sharing is caring, Mama! I care that my clothes might feel excluded. See? You’re doing great!

Hallmark Who?

(Photo by This Life’s Illusions on Unsplash) A collection of cellophane-wrapped, heart-shaped lollipops gleam with a rich, translucent red hue. Differing in size, they boast wooden sticks, and are arranged upon a white styrofoam base.

A lollypop on Valentine’s Day means as much to me as a lollypop on any other day. I won’t love you more or less if you don’t buy me heart-shaped treats unless I demand them in the store with you.

If you do buy me thematic sweets that I haven’t preapproved, we both know it’s more about the Medium photo shoot than because I care who Hallmark is.

I’m twenty-three months old. Cut a piece of parchment paper into a heart the size of my head, and let me celebrate Valentine’s Day by crafting homemade confetti. I’ll be diligent in my big-boy responsibility of decorating the entire house. If you hand over the crayons, I’ll even draw you a personal mural on the hallway walls.

Go Buy a Parrot

(Photo by Jean-Philippe Delberghe on Unsplash) A vividly colored macaw perches gracefully. Its feathers are a brilliant tapestry of blues, from sky to navy, with splashes of sunny yellow and touches of green on its back. The bird’s vibrant plumage contrasts with the subdued, earthy tones of the branch it rests on and the rocky background that softly blurs away.

“Gabriel! Say, ‘Happy Valentine’s Day,’” you coax as I sit cross-legged on our bed with your purloined phone in my hands.

I know you can’t see me, but the look I’m giving you is an unblinking stare halfway between patient indulgence and amused disbelief. You know I’ll never learn that phrase before Wednesday.

My inability to roleplay a parrot for you and your online friends has nothing to do with my intellect. I simply don’t care; trust me, neither do most of your followers.

I’m doing you a favor. Most states adhere to stringent child performer laws. You’re already so stressed! Do you really want to be sued for overstepping contractual obligations?

Listen, since you’re not actually pressing me too hard, I’ll make you a deal. Keep tossing the words my way, and I may reconsider my silence just in time for Halloween. “Trick or treat” is overused anyway.

Why Does Love Need a Holiday?

(Photo supplied by author) A heart-shaped pizza with golden, bubbly cheese rests on a metal serving tray. It sits upon a table with a red plate and pizza cutter in the background. The crust is toasted to a light brown, suggesting a crispy texture.

I might be joining the influx of writers blogging about Valentine’s Day, but that doesn’t mean I understand. I’ve only just learned what a heart looks like, after all.

(Photo supplied by author) This image showcases a toddler’s Valentine’s Day themed creation. A large heart, painted in bold red strokes, frames a set of little purple handprints at its center. The vibrant prints are uneven, some fingers splayed wide, others close together, capturing a moment of playful expression. At the bottom of the page, a blacked-out area suggests personal information, and handwritten text notes the artist’s age at 22 months.

I hug you every day because I love hugs. I give kisses when I want because I know they have something to do with affection. I lie pressed against you in bed because you’re my safe place.

I love you.

You don’t hit back when I express frustration by whapping you. You hold me close when I cry, babbling comforting words I don’t really understand. You set boundaries I both hate and rely on to feel secure.

You love me.

I throw toys, kick you in the boobies during diaper changes, fling unwanted food, and behave beautifully for people I don’t live with.

This is love.

You yell at me sometimes and make me cry. Then you apologize, hold me, and speak more softly next time. I know you lose sleep because you think you’ll break me if you do it wrong.

This is neurotic.

Also…

This is love.

Thematic outfits, Mama/toddler outings, heart-shaped lollies, and phrases with too many syllables don’t matter. I don’t need a big red holiday to remind me that I love you.

Happy Love Day, Mama. It’ll be just like every other.

Calling All ValenToddlers

(Photo by Travis Grossen on Unsplash) Two young children lie amidst a circular arrangement of deep red flowers on a white textured blanket. The older child, with curly hair, is dressed in a white shirt, while the younger one, with lighter hair, wears a white diaper. Their backs are to each other, and they are surrounded by the vibrant petals that provide a striking contrast to the white background and their light attire.

Hey, you, crouched in the corner with the phone or tablet your grownup hasn’t realized is no longer theirs!

Do you have a new, adorable outfit? Did you go somewhere special with your ValenParent? Do you or your grownups have an opinion on the big red heart day?

One of my new favorite pastimes is looking at pictures! Will you show me some? I know I’m not the only cutie contributing to making Frazzled awesome.

Remember to throw my Mama a bone if you comment with pictures! She’s blind, and I don’t have the vocabulary to describe how toddlerific my peers look!

Happy ValenToddler Day, everyone!

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About the Creator

Sirena Carroll - The Blind Single Mom

Killing Misconceptions, One Story At A Time

I'm Sirena, a book-loving blind mom opening up on the unique life of single and co-parenting with a disability.

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Comments (2)

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  • Dharrsheena Raja Segarran2 months ago

    Awww, Gabriel is sooo adorable! Happy Valentines day, Little Man! 🥰🥰🥰 I loved the heart shaped pizza and the artwork that he did!

  • L.C. Schäfer2 months ago

    He so cute, and the bit about child performer laws and getting sued made me chuckle!

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