The Terrible/Wonderful Twos–Loving Whatever Life Throws Our Way

Our youngest son recently turned two. TWO! Every time I’ve had a two-year-old I can distinctly remember thinking to myself, “Could I possibly love this kid any more?? If I could only freeze time, I’d freeze him at this age, right here, right now.” I LOVE two. It is my favorite, favorite, favorite age.

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Yesterday was a moment I would have froze if I could. We were putting Christmas decorations up, and N (that cute little two-year-old), enthusiastic about all the festiveness in a way only a two-year-old can be, grabbed the angel from a Melissa and Doug nativity set and ran to my husband. “See, Daddy? See? This Mommy! Mommy a angel.”

My heart turned to mush.

Obviously he’d totally forgot about how I was the meanest mom on the planet an hour before for not letting him try a bite of the uncooked chicken I was cutting up for dinner…

While I would freeze each of my children at the age of two for eternity if I could, There’s no doubt in my mind that the “terrible twos” are real. Oh, so very real. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” It was the age of pure joy, it was the age of temper tantrums. It was the season of laughter and squeals, it was the season of never-ending potty training. It was the time of ‘do it myself’ (hooray!), it was the time of ‘do it myself’ (ahh! No!!). Two is, without a doubt, a paradox. It’s a year thick and thin with inconsistency.

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But, the more I’ve thought about it, maybe that’s just life. We live in a world of ups and downs. Mountains and valleys are ever present in all of our lives, wether we are in the thick of raising a child in the terrible/wonderful twos, or if our children are states away with families of their own. Some mountains in our lives may seem so incredible they touch the skies, some valleys may seem so deep we feel we may never rise again. Regardless of where we find ourselves, a lesson I learned years ago from a talk has stuck with me.

“Come what may and love it.

“…every life has peaks and shadows and times when it seems that the birds don’t sing and bells don’t ring. Yet in spite of discouragement and adversity, those who are happiest seem to have a way of learning from difficult times, becoming stronger, wiser, and happier as a result.” —Joseph B. Wirthlin

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Having a two-year-old around again has reminded me of that advice. Most days are the absolute best. My mountain seem higher than the clouds. Others, well, I’ve simply had to remind myself to laugh…

“The next time you’re tempted to groan, you might try to laugh instead. It will extend your life and make the lives of all those around you more enjoyable.”

…and “seek for the eternal.”

“Because Jesus Christ suffered greatly, He understands our suffering. He understands our grief. We experience hard things so that we too may have increased compassion and understanding for others.” –Wirthlin

Whatever our lives bring, I hope we can tell ourselves, “Come what may, and love it.” I hope we can laugh at our blunders, at the little frustrations, at the uncomfortable situations. And when our valleys are deep and we are too far down to laugh, may we look up and seek for His help. Only through Him can we be made whole.

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Categories: children, Life Lessons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

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8 thoughts on “The Terrible/Wonderful Twos–Loving Whatever Life Throws Our Way

  1. Sheila

    I never had Terrible Twos. But we did have some Trying Threes!

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  2. Mine are 18 months and I haven’t experienced two yet, but I feel like this is a magical age 🙂

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    • I think 18 months is really when it starts…I love that age! They are starting to really talk and their personality starts to show. Two two-year-olds at your house though, that will be fun!

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  3. I love this so much! Parker is not quite 2 yet, but already this stage feels magical to me. I love that you quoted Dickins: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” Haha oh so fitting. But, even more so, I think you are on to something, no matter what stage of life we are in, there are mountains and valleys, and really where ever we find ourselves at the moment, we should embrace it and try to keep an eternal perspective. “Come What May and Love it!” Seriously, this is one of my favorite phrases, too! Love this post, Chelsi! Beautiful 🙂

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    • I think I would say the magic really starts (if I could say it really “starts,” as every stage from the beginning is magical!) around 18 months. Suddenly they start talking more, they are excited about everything, and their innocence is endearing. Parker sounds like he’s in that stage now too, with his hats and all. 🙂 It’s so fun! I was thinking I should probably read that book now since I quoted it…have you read it before? Elder Wirthlin was always one that I really looked forward to hearing from. His talks always resonated with me. “Come what may and love it” is definitely something I hope my kids can learn! I hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

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  4. Chelsi…so lovely! I must say… the twos are super special. The age does get a bad rep, but I am bracing myself for the preteen/teen years…. coming soon because my oldest is 10! Great post!

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    • Oh, the preteen/teen years! I’m already just a little nervous for those, and I have a while to go! I student-taught a fourth and fifth grade class back in college, and I have to say, I really loved that age. I hope that the transition just goes smoothly for you! Maybe it will be like the twos…it gets a bad rap, but really it’s pretty great. 🙂

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