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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Temper Tantrum Time

Well. I would personally love to throw myself on the floor and pound my fists in the ground while screaming, wouldn’t you? I mean, haven’t you ever had one of “those days” where it feels like the whole world is against you? I know I have. Today has been one of them.  Work was crazy busy, and then I got a call from the payment center for the hospital demanding money from me and I NEVER received a bill.  Long story short, they had the wrong address on the mail they sent out. BUT before they figured that out, I pretty much felt like user and loser. I almost, ALMOST went postal on the poor person from the payment center.  That got resolved, and then I had to go to the doctor, where I waited for ONE HOUR AND FIFTEEN MINUTES just to be seen for five minutes and sent on my way. THEN, I got stuck in traffic, the checker at the Wal-Mart was slow… and here is something… I am a bit OCD. I bring my own shopping bags to do my “food shopping”, AND I arrange my groceries on the belt based on how I want them bagged. DON’T MESS WITH MY SYSTEM. And yup… she did. God bless her, but NOT TODAY. Don’t mess with my cold items. Don’t you be putting the pizza rolls next to the box of cereal; it is 90 degrees outside for cry eye. What if the pizza rolls melt and the watery mess on the outside of the bag gets my cereal box wet? I MEAN COME ON.

So I write this and laugh. I would love to have a good melt down right now. Sit there and get all pissy, cry, rage in a tantrum but I won’t. I mean, how many adults do you see have a full blown temper tantrum? (WAIT… don’t answer that, I have seen that before. I have been on the receiving end of an adult temper tantrum)
Anyway, I am trying to figure out where my three year old got the idea in her head that temper tantrums ROCK.  When you are having a baby people always warn you about the terrible twos. Heck, the twos were NOTHING in this house… PIECE O’ CAKE!  What has been challenging… the beginning of the temper tantrum threes.
Maddy is a wonderful child. She is smart, funny, and she will sing to anything. She is adorable… Just look at this face!

 BUT she has a temper. Man, does that girl have a temper.  Last night we battled that temper (or should I say this morning) for two hours. Maddy woke up and first wanted to eat (this was at 3 AM, mind you). Then she wanted a drink. Then she wanted to watch TV.  After saying NO to TV, she finally went to bed.  Five minutes later, she wanted to watch TV again, and snuggle with mommy in mommy’s bed. I said no, that we all needed to sleep and there it happened. The ugly temper roared out of my daughter. She screamed and got stuck on wanting to snuggle in mommy’s bed. I said no, that we all needed to sleep and she just kept raging. AND IT KILLED ME to see her so upset. However, in these situations, we have to learn how to solve it and help the toddler NOT repeat the same behavior.  I am NOT an advocate of rewarding bad behavior (If you just stop screaming, Maddy I will let you snuggle in my bed…UM NO). Instead, I had to try to calm her down and win. 
Now, how do you win with a toddler? I have no idea if this is the right way, but here is what I do… I don’t give in to her temper tantrums. It is easy to give in… man is it easy , especially when you are drained and tired, but you just can’t.  You have to win. Time ins (I do this when she is so angry that I hold her and tell her it’s all going to be ok) instead of time outs…  I tell her she will be fine, and I am firm.  I take away some of her toys and tell her that when she calms down she can have them back.  And I wait it out. Most importantly I wait and wait for her to cave before I do. It took two hours last night, but the tantrum stopped and she calmed down, she went back to bed knowing she is loved. I wonder how many times we will have to do this in the coming year.  Regardless, I wouldn’t change it for the world.  I love my sweet Maddy more than she will ever know… even at 4 am during a temper tantrum. I hold her, tell her I love her and stick to my guns. 

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