When it comes to comparing toddler behaviours everyone is very quick to compare horror stories of The Terrible Twos. But no one warns you... no one ever says anything about the terrible ones.
I think people associate the terrible twos with toddler tantrums and children asserting their will much more than previously. But I don't think this is something that magically appears when your child turns one. I wrote about children developing and asserting their independence in a post a few months ago, but since writing this I have seen my one year old further develop his sense of who is and what he wants. This has meant that he has shown a lot of behaviours that would normally be associated with the terrible twos such as crying when I take something off him that he shouldn't have (although this maybe doesn't class as a full-on toddler tantrum.) He also seems to be learning the word 'No'. If he doesn't want his Weetabix and wants toast (every morning) he has sometimes said 'Nyaaaa' when I've put the spoon near him - so I think it's the start of him learning the dreaded word.
His struggle for independence has been going on for several months, but is definitely increasing. As he still can't walk unaided for more than a few steps I will hold onto his hand as he walks along, but he very often tries to throw my hands off. When changing his nappy, he has learn that he can get up and scoot off - which has been an interesting development. So rather than being a magical change in personality that occurs on a child's second birthday, a child's assertion of their independence seems to be a more gradual and can begin much earlier It is a process that requires patience from both ourselves and our child, something that they will hopefully learn along with everything else. This is an exciting, but also a difficult time for children and their carers as they want to do much more than they can physically do, so we need to show tolerance and compassion for our children at this time and help them through it as best we can. Even when they decide they've had enough of their book and throw it at a stranger on the bus.