** This little guy turns six this week! We made it through the twos, and threes, and so on... it's mostly a blur, and I have no real advice to mothers of 2yr olds other than yes, they know your weaknesses! (Reposted from April 2011)
We poor toddlers have so much going against us. We are surrounded by beings much larger than us, and the largest of the beings, the "mother," seems to have been created solely to thwart our fun-having and world-exploring efforts at every turn. We would utterly despair, and perhaps shall, if all of our weaponry against them proves ineffective. As for me, in all of my two years, I have found no success with weapons weilded by my siblings. I have little success with the Winning Smile; the Reasoned Argument is yet out of my reach; the Sibling Blame is only possible for those who have walked on this earth for even longer than I, and taken ample time to store up the vocabulary and body language to decieve the mother.
As for me, I have grown in wisdom and knowledge, and have wisely reduced my arsenal against the large beings to one category: the fit.
The wilted flower
Slowly sink to your knees, hang your head and shoulders, and maintain grief-filled silence. Refuse eye contact. If a Large Person attempts to cajole you into talking or tempts you to smile, summon the powers of your imagination. Envision a torn blankie left in a mud puddle, or stepped-on cookie, or anything else that causes your heart to ache with deep and indescribable pain, and continue to wilt.
The skull cracking scream: When injured or wronged, you may find this scream comes naturally to you. My only advice to my peers who use this weapon: Make sure you are not in arm's reach of the mother.
The toothy attack
A tool best used on siblings when the Large People are not looking. Your stature may be small, but an attack with your entire body is often effective. Run towards your enemy, and grab him. A proper grab utilizes the muscles of the arms, legs, and jaw.
The leaky faucet
Best used on tired Large People. At random intervals throughout the day, emit unhappy noises. Screams, whines, fusses, and gibberish complaints are all acceptable. You do not need a reason for such noises, your job is to simply make them frequent and relentlessly. If you are feeling creative, you may want to add some bangs, crashes, and "injuries" just to mix it up a bit. If successful, the mother may give you a blankie and set you in front of your favorite movie while she hides in another room. But beware: if you push her too quickly, you may just end up with an extra nap.
The despairing soul
When you find yourself frustrated, and unable to solve your problem with screaming, try this technique. First, make your desires known in the best and loudest manner possible. If the mother, chair, stool, or toy refuses to obey your clear direction, fall dramatically to your knees. (See wilting flower above.) After a moment's wilt, make plain the utter despair welling in your heart by sinking to the floor. From your knees, crash forward to your belly, splaying arms and legs out wide to show the depth and width and height of your despair. Roll from your stomach to your back, ensuring you still have an audience. If you hear laughter or any other unhelpful noise (like advice on your problem,) simply roll back to your stomach and display the utter sadness and hopelessness of a splattered bug.
Daily I build my arsenal, daily I practice my techniques. I do not give up, because I see the Large People around me are imperfect, vulnerable to attack, and prone to their own version of fit-throwing. Though I cannot yet claim victory, I sense that the mother is weary. My triumphant reign may be right around the corner. I shall press on.