Tuesday, May 14, 2013

toddler days

Before I had a child, and before I even thought of having children, I thought I was going to be one of those people who spanks their children when they are unruly or "spoiled".  I thought that a quick swat on the bum seemed like an effective way to stop a tantrum and restore order and obedience in the household.  HA.

As soon as I had Emma, not only I felt that the whole concept was absurd, but I also realized that the swat-on-the-bum-as-peace-solution was a figment of someone's imagination.  Someone without children.  You try to do that to a 2 year old in tantrum mode.  In particular to a sensitive one, who will think that the world as she knows it has turned on its head, and will be desperate and scared and as a result cry even harder.  It does not work!

We have at least two daily episodes of meltdown, some days worse than others.  Yesterday we were riding my bike (I have a pink bike seat for her on the steering axel) and we went to the food shop to buy salad.  (God forbid that I run out of salad, who knows what my internal rabbits will feed on).  I got into the store and put her in a cart that looks like a car, I mean with a steering wheel and everything.  It is quite cute actually.  We went around the shop a few times for her amusement, and she ate one of the bananas that I had not paid for yet...ahem...then she wanted back in.  I put her back in.  Then out again.  Then back in.  It was such a fun game.  What made it even better was trying to pay for the salad at the same time and explaining about the extra banana, i.e. improvising the banana's weight with another similar banana. 

In the end, when it was time to leave, she did not want to go.  She screamed and kicked and I had to lift her up, then she hit her fingers onto the door trying to run back in, then some random old lady asked me if I needed help, then some other random passers-by started wondering if they should involve the Ministry of Children and Families, etc.  You know, the usual.  (You know what I mean if you have a 2 year old). 

I have a lot of patience, but sometimes she wears me out.  I don't know if my waiting it out strategy is the best way to deal with her meltdowns.  I try to ignore them as much as I can, and to give her love and acceptance and hugs when she calms down.  I try to ask her persistently to put back objects, stop throwing sand, not draw on the walls, etc, many times, until she stops.  I try to wear her out.  I am playing the "my patience is older than your patience" game.  Is that what I am supposed to do? Who knows.  Please recommend books.  I need to learn.  I need a guru.

1 comment:

  1. Ha. I usually say when we are leaving somewhere, "Are you going to walk like a big boy or should I carry you?" I usually end up carrying a kicking screaming tantruming toddler out but today he walked so maybe it's working? Leaving is non-negotiable, but I give "choices" where I can, and for fun places like the park I give lots of warnings, "we have to leave soon". Hang in there!