What a beautiful day it is! You think, “Maybe I should pack up a picnic, put my daughter’s bike in the back of the truck and bring her to the park for a day filled with fun!” I see your very optimistic. But don’t forget, you have a 3yo whose trigger for going off could be anything.
So you tell your little ray of sunshine the good news. She’s so excited! She runs and gets her shoes on. Then it happens. You tell her she needs a jacket. “NOOOOOO!!! I Don’t want a jacket!” Then she throws herself on the floor screaming and crying.
You stand there in awe of the fiasco unraveling in front of you. Nothing goes through your mind except, “What the hell just happened?”
Moments later, she gets up. She starts laughing, runs to her toys and starts playing. You’re still standing there, looking at the puddle of tears on the ground and single shoe left behind from the kicking fit she just had. You shake it off and just grab a jacket instead of making her put it on. After all, it’s 58 outside and you know she’ll ask for one eventually anyways. Pick your battles, right?
You get to the park and unpack the picnic. She asks for goldfish. You hand her a ziploc bag of goldfish. She says no, she wanted the rainbow goldfish not the orange goldfish. Fast forward to after the yelling and goldfish flying in every direction. Your little one is thrashing around on the ground like a beached dolphin. High pitch dolphin squeals included.
You’re telling her to stop screaming, but she’s so offended at the crappy orange goldfish you dared to give her that she’s inconsolable. Before you start yelling and threatening, you glance up to see if there’s any witnesses that could judge the poor parenting moves your about to do. Damn…multiple glaring eyes looking your way. You’ll have to play the fake mom that always remains in control and is understanding.
You offer her hugs. No go. You try and ask her what’s wrong. “Yew mayme mad den yew wownt gimme wainbo gofish n im cwying beecus yew mayd me mad asdkfa;dd *sob* fafieo *sob* iazzza *scream* duidl;a” The last part of her complaint being incomprehensible.
In your head you envision yourself stuffing goldfish in her mouth while screaming “THEY ALL TASTE THE SAME! THERE’S NO DIFFERENCE!!!!”
You’re brought back into reality when you see her take off running into an open soccer field. Her hands are up in the air, her faint screams of gibberish can still be heard and her pants are starting to fall down revealing the top of her butt crack.
You slowly get up to go retrieve your feral child. Then you see her stop, look around and start screaming your name bc she doesn’t know where you are. You get to her and she hugs you and starts laughing again. You bring her back to the picnic where she happily eats the damn orange goldfish with no complaints.
You’ve read all the books. You get it. Kids don’t understand how to control their emotions or whatever. They say have patience and just offer hugs and wait for them to get through their “big and scary” emotions.
Well, maybe parks and other kid-friendly areas should consider building a mini-bar nearby. It’s brutal going through a tantrum. People stare at you, you’re embarrassed and your child is in danger of animal control picking her up and tranq’ing her. Which actually might not be a bad thing.
Either way, every parent goes through them eventually. And yes it takes years off your life. All you can do is try and keep yourself calm and wait it out. But that’s like saying sit patiently on your couch while an F5 tornado rips through your home. If you don’t think you can handle that, you better go talk to your local animal control about those tranquilizers.