Living life in the carpool lane..

Posts Tagged ‘toddler tantrums

After dropping off M at school one day, K and I decided to do a Michael’s run.  I had a couple of items I needed to buy for an order and the morning was the perfect time to do so.

K was not up to it at all.  She wanted out of the shopping cart.  She wanted to walk around on her own.

I had to shop.  I had to listen to the whining that turned into crying, that almost turned into screaming.

Thank God for the woman that was in line before me.  Having been through this phase in motherhood, she understood that K was probably not going to last much longer and let me make my purchase before her.

By the time, we were done and on our way out of the store, K was practically in tears.  The screaming hadn’t started yet.  It was more her ‘pity cry’ than her “i’m mad, get me out of here NOW” cry.

I took her out of the shopping cart, put the items into the car, and right as I was going to put her into the carseat, she holds me tighter.

She obviously didn’t want to get strapped down into another seat again.

With time to kill, I let her hold me.  I held her back, I squeezed her tight.  I comforted her.

We stood in the parking lot, holding each other and I was swaying back and forth.  We were dancing in the parking lot.

It was all she needed.

It was a pretty hectic morning.  It had been a pretty hectic few days.  All she wanted was to slow down and take a break.

She just wanted hugs.  She just wanted comfort.

We danced in the parking lot for about 10-15 minutes.  Eventually her hold on my relaxed.  We played a bit with her in my arms.  We laughed.  I talked, she babbled.

When it came time to finally put her back into the carseat, she was fine.  She let me strap her in.  She didn’t fuss.  She didn’t complain.  Everything was pleasant again.

In the middle of all the chaos that is our day to day lives, it’s hard to remember to just slow down and take a break.

Thanks, K.  Lesson learned.

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M has just hit the “over two and half” age mark and suddenly she’s big whiner.

When she hears something she doesn’t like, she’s either on the floor crying, or she’s whining and saying, “no” repeatedly..

I just don’t know why…

My mom likes to think that THIS is the true onset of the ‘terrible two’ phenomenon.  A lot of people with older children love to tell me that ‘terrible two’ doesn’t really start until she’s two and a half, almost three.

Oh boy, so if it’s starting NOW.. then I’m in trouble.

She almost reminds me of a hormonal teenage girl.  She’s got those ups and downs of an adolescent.  It sort of scares me to think about what she’s going to be like at 12 and 13 years old..

I’ve been trying to curb her reactions by picking her up on the floor, looking her straight in the eyes, and telling her that she doesn’t need to cry when she hears something she doesn’t like. 

I also make sure she calms down and stops crying before she can move on her with day after the mini-tantrum. 

I try to talk to her all the time, telling her that it’s ok to simply say ‘no’ without resorting to tears.  Also, it’s ok to tell us what she wants without resorting to whining for it or crying for it. 

Sometimes, she responds, ‘yes’ like she truly understands what I’m trying to tell her, but I know that it just goes in one ear and out the other..

I’m hoping this is a short-lived phase and that she’ll be my pleasant, easy-going M once again..

At least she still gives out great hugs!

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The other day, we were at her hair stylist.  It’s a place specifically for kids.  It has a waiting room that is just full of toys, that M LOVES! 

After her haircut, she wanted to play, but we had errands to run.  I compromised and told her she could play for about 10 minutes.  After the 10 minutes was up, I told M it was time to go. 

“No.  I play in toys.”

I walked toward her to hold her hand and guide her to the door and that’s when it all melted down. 

She pulled all her weight down to the floor and started to cry and beg to stay. 

I picked her up and she was bawling.  If anything, she should have been mad at me for taking her away from what she wanted.  Instead, she wrapped her arms around me and hugged me so tightly while crying her eyes out. 

I comforted her and explained to her that we couldn’t stay and she eventually calmed down. 

I mentioned to my mom that I’m so glad that she hasn’t learned how to get mad at ME for taking her away from the situation.  I told my mom that I was still glad that she was still innocent enough to come to me for comfort after I was the cause of her tears. 

I’m so happy that I’m not the bad guy.. yet.  I hope this doesn’t change for a long, long time..

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Tantrums are NO joke!

I knew of the crying.  I knew of the flailing.  I knew of the screaming.  I knew of the throwing herself on the floor.

I didn’t know of the physical damage it could do to me.

Ok.  I’m exaggerating.  But still.

I didn’t realize how hard it was to wrangle a tantruming toddler. 

The following scenario is regarding bathtime.  See this blog post for the reference.

First, there’s the chasing after a wiggling and rolling toddler all over the living room floor.  Not only am I chasing after her, I’m bent over trying to pick her up at the same time.  She’s wiggling and rolling in an irratic pattern.  I don’t know where she’ll turn, but I’m bent over trying to pick her up while trying to figure out what direction she’s going to next.

Once I finally get her into a corner that she can no longer wiggle around, I sit down and try to pick her up into my lap.  THAT is impossible.  The minute I get my arms around her, she either goes limp into a dead weight, or she fights.  She contorts her body in such ways to get out of my hold.  No one told me what a toll that could have on my back!

The struggle can take about 5-15 minutes, but once I get a firm hold on her, there is the task of having to stand up from being on the ground.  Any sudden change in my motion causes her to start fighting me again.  Trying to get up with a twisting and turning 27lb toddler is painful.  Painful.

Then bath time was painful because she fought it so hard that the angle I used to bathe her was not good on my back. 

Lets not forget that once she is IN the bath, she actually LIKES the bath.  So once the bath was over, she was NOT happy again.

The struggle to get her OUT of the bath begins again.  This time, I have to scoop an angry, tantruming toddler out of a bathtub.  Talk about back pain!

I finally take her out of the bath, I’m soaking wet and in pain and the only thing I can do is run us straight to the couch so I can sit down.  Luckily, I am able to calm her down and the fighting finally stops.

She’s fine.

I’m in pain.

Oh my back!  There has to be a better way!

Bathtime used to be one of M’s favorite times.

All I had to say was, “M, do you want to take a bath?” and she’s drop what ever she was doing and go straight to the bathtub.

Now, every time I ask her if she wants a bath I get told no.

She’ll shake her head, say, “nuh uh” and walk away.

If I ask again, she’ll say, “No, play.”

Of course, because I’m the mommy, I insist that she takes a bath, but it’s such a battle.  There’s crying and flailing.  There’s that “go limp” trick that toddlers do that make it impossible to pick them up.  There’s a lot of whining.  There’s a lot of “no no no no no!”

But once I get her in and calmed down, I can easily bathe her.  She just has to fight!

Then, once she’s in and clean, of course she wants to play in the water.

Then it becomes a battle to get her OUT of the tub..

Toddlers.. there’s no reasoning, is there?

M has been A LOT better about her tantrums.

I don’t know if she’s learning how to control herself more, or she was feeling under the weather after we got back from Hawaii (she got sick from the germs on the plane), but she’s definitely not the crazy temper-tantrum terrible two year old I was describing in some posts from earlier in September.  Refer to here, here, here, here, and here.

She’s learning to communicate.

When she doesn’t get her way, she begins to whine, but more often than not, I’m able to calm her down enough to explain to her what is going on.  Then, I can usually distract her with something else, or find a compromise since she was so good about dealing with the situation.

Who knows.  I could be totally jinxing myself and she’ll revert right back to the crazy tantrums tomorrow!

Life with a toddler is always unpredictable..

So for now, I’m enjoying this calm.

It started out easy enough.

M asked for milk.  However, since M had been sick for the past few days, all she wanted was milk.

I wanted to give her water.

Well, M wanted milk and she was going to let me know that.

She asked me for milk.  I said, “Why don’t you drink some water instead?”

Well, I apparently said a bad thing.  It was as if I told her that she can never drink any liquid ever again.  It was like I told her that she was to be thirsty for the rest of her life.

She threw herself onto the ground and screamed and cried for milk.

When she calmed down, I offered her a compromise.  Drink a little bit of water, and then I will give her milk.

She cried.

But because I’m the mommy, I gave her the water anyway.  She drank it.  And she calmed down.

So, like I promised, I started to pour her milk.

She saw me take the milk out.  She even told me that I was holding milk.  She saw me pour the milk into her sippy cup.

But, I guess she wanted it in a bottle because when I handed it to her, she was on the floor and screaming and crying again.

She turned her back on me and on the milk.

So I sat with her.  I sat with her while she pouted away from me.

After a few minutes of pouting, she put a hand on my leg.  Soon after, she snuggled up into my lap.

I hugged her for a bit, then I told her in a super calm way that what was in the sippy cup was milk.  Then I asked her if she wanted it.  In her small voice, she calmly told me yes.  So I handed her the sippy cup and she took it and drank it.

Victory for me!

There have been many small frequent meltdowns, but this one seems to be the worst.  I’d like to say that I won this battle..

If only they will only be this easy from now on…


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