Throughout Eli’s first year and now as a toddler, I’ve found that he bears a striking resemblance to some of his older counterparts. First, he looked just like a tiny grandpa, and frankly, he tended to act that way, too. He was grumpy, slept a lot, and made a tremendous mess when he ate. He burped in mixed company as well. As he has grown up, he has started acting more like another set of his elders–college students.
Now, obviously every toddler and every college student is a little different, but I find that the more I reflect back on college and watch my toddler, the more I realize that I could probably drop him off at a dorm and, aside from his size, he would fit right in. He may be small, but he has all the energy and many of the habits of the co-eds living in dorms and frat houses all over this country. I feel like we’re expecting he’ll grow out of some of these stages, only to grow back into them later, but at least many of them are pretty entertaining to watch.
2. Their rooms are a complete and utter mess and it doesn’t seem to bother them one bit 1 of 8
And eventually their parents will start to give up nagging them to clean it up because it's just not worth it anymore. We clean and clean and an hour later everything is out again.
3. Their meals are a collection of things that should never be eaten together 2 of 8
Today for lunch my son had a pancake, Mexican rice, and a cheddar cheese stick, which I'm certain is something I ate for lunch in college. Vegetables are scarce.
4. They’re both freeloaders 3 of 8
Toddlers are money-sucking machines. And guess what? So are most college students--they are just more creative in asking for money and cry a little bit less for the things they want. Well, most of them.
5. They tend to lack safety awareness 4 of 8
Last week, my toddler decided he could step down off the couch as though he were suddenly 5 feet tall and hey, that did not end well. Similarly, when I was a college student, I jumped off a wall onto concrete and broke both my feet. Alcohol was only a factor in one of those situations, but they both demonstrate pretty poor decision-making.
6. They want to be independent, but still need their parents 5 of 8
Toddlers and college students both want to be free from the shackles of their parents... right until something isn't going their way. Or they run out of money. See #4.
7. Their clothing choices are often questionable 6 of 8
Eli is just stepping out with his own style. And many college students are finally able to wear whatever they want without mom giving them side eye. That definitely makes them two groups that get a lot of double takes in public. And both toddlers and college students will see pictures of these outfits decades later and be horrified.
8. They both love technology 7 of 8
Don't believe me? Go give a college student and a toddler a smartphone and see how long it takes to get it back. Or how long before they'll stop ignoring you.
10. 80% of the time, you have no idea what they’re saying 8 of 8
My toddler seems to have his own very confusing language. And while I want to encourage him to talk, I find myself mostly responding with a generic "really?" since I have no earthly idea what he is trying to tell me. Similarly, with all the abbreviations these days (IDK is not a word!), I can only decode a college student's conversation if I have Urban Dictionary open on my phone.
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