May 23, 2011 09:00 AM

Courtesy Layla Kayleigh

MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew Insiders host Layla Kayleigh is letting readers follow along as she tackles motherhood.

Layla and her boyfriend Steven Covino‘s daughter Melody Rain is now 18 months old!

In her newest blog, Layla fills us in on the latest with her toddler (running and saying “no!”), shares photos and asks for your advice on dealing with “the mean kid” at the playground.

Melody has been keeping me so busy the last few months! Ever since she started walking, I feel like I have been running around like a madwoman trying to prevent all types of potential accidents. She is so fast, it’s like she’s Speedy Gonzales and I’m Sylvester chasing after her.

I had no idea that at this age, our little toddlers have such strong personalities — she’s like a proper little person! It’s unbelievable. For example, when I go to dress her she’ll clearly express to me she doesn’t like something. She shakes her head at me and says “No!” So I try to give her choices instead of her just thinking she can say no to everything. If I say, “Melody, do you want to wear this shirt or that shirt?” she’ll point to the one she likes best — same with food.

Courtesy Layla Kayleigh

The weather has been so nice in California this month, so we’ve been taking her on lots of adventures. We went to a state park and she’s been going to the beach a lot, which she loves. (See photos!)

Something that has been new to me is watching Melody play and interact with other kids. I had my first mean kid experience a few weeks back — there was a child that Melody was trying to play with at the park, and the older girl was snatching Melody’s toys and telling her she didn’t want to play with her, but that Melody couldn’t play with her own toys!

Courtesy Layla Kayleigh

Although Melody is too young to understand exactly what was going on, as a mom I felt so sad seeing another kid be mean to my kid! I totally froze and didn’t know how to handle it. Initially my protective instincts kicked in, but then I had to tell myself the girl is just a child too, and I can’t be telling off someone else’s kid — that’s not my place either.

After having to mentally check myself, I nicely said to the other girl, “Melody likes you and would love to share her toys and play with you. Do you want to play with us?”

But it just got me thinking — how do you deal with this issue when the kids are a bit older and have to deal with mean kids and bullying? There’s such a fine line between protecting our children and giving them the tools they need to learn how to stand up for themselves … I know I’m not really there yet with Melody because she’s so young, however it did get my wheels turning.

Would love to hear your stories and the way you’ve handled these sensitive situations. I could use the advice for the future! 🙂

Courtesy Layla Kayleigh

Much love,

— Layla Kayleigh

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