A Letter from My Toddler

Please Momma, please

I seem like I need that gadget or phone,

but what I am really saying by being still and quiet

Is that I am not getting the right exercise for my body and brain.

As soon as you take that thing away,

I will melt down.

You have just given me a powerful drug that makes you think

I am happy and an unseen/unheard child.

But, what I need more than sirens and smartphones,

is fresh air

And legs that run.

Things to take apart and examine and climb.

I need to read the words of the universe

That are painted in the trees.

I can’t think straight

Because my brain is filled

With flashes of bright light

And fast-moving images and sounds.

The fire truck should be great to push around the room,

But instead, I sit still and keep pushing the siren over and over.

I can’t think straight.

Pushed to my overloaded limit, I lash out.

I hit.

I bite.

I kick.

All of this is my little toddler person saying

My way of saying “NO” is throwing and biting and hitting.

It’s as violent to me on the inside

As the rage I show to you,

When I throw the plastic phone,

Hitting you on the head.

Please, please instead:

Give me a blanket and teddy

And boxes for making forts and trains.

I know it looks like I want to climb higher to hold that phone you use,

But I can’t help but meltdown when you take it away.

My eyes can’t handle the screen.

It makes me then scream.

Please use an intervention.

My addiction is dramatic.

I love you.

I love you.

I

love

you

— not the screens.

But, my brain is all scrambled

and when you grab that phone away from me,

All I can think to let come out is a giant toddler,

“NO!”

So, hold me a bit longer.

Help me to play again.

Let me be kind to others in a way

I can only do

When I feel good about myself.

Please mama, please.

Hug me tight and save me now!

Show me how gently

To let the screens and loud toys go.

Show me that you can find the true meaning in my word,

“NO!”

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