The title of this post pretty much sums it up.
I’ve dealt with a lot of toddlers in my time and I feel like I’ve seen a wide range of emotions from them. Tantrums are part and parcel of looking after a preschooler. I feel I have a broad set of skills, experience and tricks up my sleeve to (hopefully) avoid a tantrum in the first place. But if it does happen then I feel I can generally get a child out of their tantrum and calm them down fairly quickly.
Mini is three. Today I needed to buy sunhats for both the children as Spring has definitely sprung and I get the feeling we’ll be spending plenty of time in the park over the next six months.
We happily chose the hats together and as we were walking to the counter to pay, Mini saw some Peppa Pig welly boots.
Her eyes widened. Her arms went out to pick them up.
“Don’t touch them!” I warned as I knew this situation could easily get out of hand and wanted to put a lid on it promptly.
Blinded as she was by her love for that bratty pig she didn’t listen to me and picked them up. Immediately clutching them to her chest, eyes closed with a big contented smile on her face as if nothing in her life had made her so happy.
“Put them back now sweetie,” I said calmly. “We don’t need those today. The weather is so nice and sunny. There aren’t any muddy puddles to jump in.”
“I want them,” she said. It was a statement, not a question.
I put on my slightly firmer voice but stayed calm. “No. You can’t have them because you don’t need them. Put them back please.”
“I want them.”
“Put them back.”
“I need them.”
“No, you don’t need them because it’s sunny. That’s why we’re going to get these sunhats. Here, why don’t you hold them and then you can give them to the person at the checkout.” I said deploying a distraction technique.
Mini wasn’t falling for it though. She didn’t take the sunhats, she merely held on tighter to the wellies.
“I want them and I need them.” Her face totally serious.
“No.” I said firmly, “You need to put them back straight away and we’re going to pay for the hats.” My hands were on Freddie’s buggy and I started to move off.
And then that’s when it happened.
Looking back on it, I see it all happening in slow motion. She collapsed to the floor; face first, wellies under her chest. Then she held her head up and SCREAMED. And she screamed. And she screamed.
I felt like every pair of eyes in the shop was on me. She screamed.
I crouched down next to her, trying to prise the boots away. She screamed.
My teeth gritted I was saying, “Give me the boots. Give them to me.” She screamed.
After what seemed like an hour I eventually got them off of her and she was still screaming. I hauled her up (yes, still screaming) and held firmly onto her hand. I shoved the hats onto a shelf and marched straight out of the shop dragging a howling Mini beside me. I was absolutely mortified.
And that is why I never want to enter a shop with her again.