Actress and TV host Toni Gonzaga’s son Seve (short for Severiano Elliott) is growing up so fast! “He's starting to say a few words! He can say dada, mama, no, book,” the mom shared in an interview with SmartParenting.com.ph before she went on stage for a Pampers segment during the Baby Fair held last January 27. Sometimes, the 16-month-old even surprises her and dad director Paul Soriano with new words. “Pero mabilisan lang, and if you ask him to say it again he can't do it. Anyway, one step at a time.”
Like every mom, Toni lovingly doled out praises for her son and how he’s growing up to be a smart little tyke. “Not only because I'm the mom of Seve, but I'd like to say that he's a smart kid. He's a fast learner! He's at a stage where he absorbs and copies everything. Every time he sees a phone he puts it at his ear,” said Toni. “We didn't really allow him to use a cell phone, but he knows how to play with it. He knows how to use it without us teaching him.
Aside from also being able to unlock child proof locks, Seve’s starting to have tantrums too. Luckily, the mom has a way to deal with them. “What I learned from another mom is don't say to a child ‘What you're doing is wrong’ or ‘That's bad!’ Don't disregard whatever it is they're feeling. Acknowledge what your baby is feeling and then explain. Like, ‘I know you're feeling bad, right now. I know you're crying because you want to stay here and play but we have to leave because it's time to go home.’”
It doesn’t work instantly, but Seve does calm down, said Toni. Fellow celeb mom Bianca Gonzalez also told Smartparenting.com.ph that she uses the same technique on her 2-year-old daughter Lucia. Practice it in your home too! Experts say it’s a good tool to help control toddler tantrums.
Positive affirmation is another parenting trick Toni likes to do. “I give him affirmations that he’s loved, and he’s a good boy,” she shared. The mom even does it when her little one’s asleep! “I always say it to him. I whisper it in his ear when he's sleeping. ‘You're loved, you're blessed. God is good. You're going to grow up to be a good boy who is respectful and humble.’”
Seve weaned last year September after a year of breastfeeding, but the pair still finds lots of ways to bond. Seve likes music, so mom finds ways to provide. “It was Paul who told me na I can already produce an album because I can invent so many songs for Seve. I'm an instant rapper.” And yes, the little boy does seem to enjoy it!
Even though he’s weaned, Seve still finds comfort in mom’s breasts too. “Pag lalapit siya, gusto niya hahawak siya sa boobs ko. Papasok niya yung kamay niya [sa damit ko].”
How's her parenting journey so far? She shared, “Balancing everything has been challenging. It's one of the things I'm still working on right now — learning how to divide my time with my husband, my work, my son, and my household. I have a notebook where I keep a record of my schedule and then I make sure that the time I spend with Seve is more than the time I spend for work.”