Took a camping trip over the weekend. Couple of days in the tamed part of the wilderness where giant trailers (made into roving apartments) can hook up to electrical outlets and other campers are very close. Not exactly a “get away from it all” sort of weekend (still no internet though, come on forest catch up!), but one with fresh air and stars at night which was an incredibly welcome change of pace.
There’s nothing quite like bringing children to a camp site. It is a new place to explore full of funny sounds and odd colors, pillar like trees and tall grass; a playground if there ever was one. There are also chipmunks. Chipmunks so accustomed to human contact they will sit under the outdoor picnic table waiting for bits of food to drop.
With chipmunks running about camp so freely, my toddler took quite a shine to their presence and wanted to play with them. Of course he wasn’t allowed to get within five feet of the speedy rodents, but he watched them with quite an intensity. When the chipmunks darted away from camp and I saw they had retreated to there hovels far, far away I allowed the toddler to go try to find them (knowing full well they would never be found and if they returned I could grab the child and get him clear of what I assume are plague carrying forest rats).
It was in his pursuit of chipmunks that I learned of every single parenting mistake I have ever made.
“Stomp?” he said.
The little monster wanted to stomp the chipmunks! It was horrifying! Instantly the mind goes to worrying about his future as a sociopath, how I’ve totally failed him as a parent. Something went terribly wrong over the short two years. He hasn’t even had language comprehension that long, but he thinks “stomping” is funny!
I’ve honestly been worried about his behavior all week.
Then I saw this:
Nope. Toddlers are just hilarious monsters.