Whosoever coined the term ‘terrible two’ must have really had a terrible kid 😆
When my son was nearing two, he took to his new avatar of throwing tantrums. Well, all kids do! It is a phase when they develop individual likes and dislikes. And the only way they deal with their dislikes is to make the scene big (in other words, making a big scene out of it). They want something. Period! It shall have no logic and no reasoning whatsoever. And the trouble comes when such a kid is to handle an adult who has multiple other tasks in life to deal with. Yes, it’s difficult for the kid to handle the adult as much as it is the other way round.
What do most parents do when their child is throwing a tantrum? Initially, we try to make them understand the logical part of it which will make no sense to them. In sometime, when the patience threshold is exceeded, yelling or spanking might begin, which is the biggest mistake that a parent can ever do in such a situation; because he’s going to roar doubly then. The best way would be to distract them into something else interesting but most terrible twos wouldn’t give in and that’s when an adult must get down into the robes of a child to make deals 😀
Having felt terribly terrible during such episodes, here are 5 instances of the negotiations I had made with my son:
He was having chocolate milkshake. He was happy about it, but only until the content was there. Once the milkshake got over, he became upset instantly demanding to get re-filled automatically. If you can understand, he didn’t want more milkshake; he specifically wanted more milkshake in the same tetra pack he was drinking from. I offered to give him another unopened milkshake pack or take him to the shop again to get a new one. No! He was clear in what he wanted. More milkshake in the same tetra pack! So, I finally promised him to do the magic. I informed him that when I get into the kitchen now and come back, the pack would be re-filled. He became curious now and stopped crying, eagerly awaiting the process of magic and cleverly made sure to follow me to double check that I wasn’t opening the new pack. I went into the kitchen, prepared a chocolate-flavoured beverage, cut open the pack, re-filled it with the beverage, pasted the cut end with a brown tape and handed it to him. He was more than happy 🙂 Here’s the proof of it!
I gave him two biscuits in his snack bowl. While running back to the sofa carrying the bowl, one of the biscuits fell down and broke to two pieces. That was it! He was angry about the breaking and immediately wanted to get it fixed 😯 Yes, he meant ‘fix’! No, I can’t give him new biscuits. I had to mend the broken biscuits. It was a time when I was making a cardboard play house for him. So, he was familiar with the functions of fevicol and cellotape. And he couldn’t understand why I just can’t bind the two biscuits with a cello tape. My lecture of edible and non-edible things made him more angry. So, I finally resigned to paste the broken biscuits together with a cello tape. And that made him happy. Now listen to the rest of the story. Soon after reaching the sofa, he got distracted into something else, forgetting his bowl of biscuits forever 😥
He was having water. He drank half from the glass and placed the remaining glass of water on the table. As my brain is programmed to gulp everything he leaves over, I quickly drank the remaining water from the glass. And there it began! He wanted the water which went into my tummy now. No, not fresh water, but the one which I drank. I went to the extent of explaining the alimentary canal structure and how the digestive system works but he didn’t bother about how it all worked. If you have followed closely by now, there’s a pattern in his tantrums. And that’s how I figure out my negotiations too. I went into the kitchen, made a gesture of spitting out water from my mouth (luckily, this time he didn’t follow me to the kitchen), filled in new water into the glass. I handed it to him saying it is the water I had spat out from my stomach and he happily drank it full 😆 There were times, after this incident, when he would intentionally leave half glass of water, wait for me to drink so that he could begin his tantrum. For a period of time, drinking the so-thought-spat water was fun to him 🙄 The best thing is that kids forget the old compelling likes and dislikes very soon (only to explore new ones which means new tantrums).
Ok, this was funny! As always, he spilled milk on the floor and he wanted it back to his mug. Inspite of the rage I felt over the spilled milk (which meant more work for me), I had to attend calmly to his rage of getting it back to his mug. (This is exactly what I mean by feeling ‘terrible’). This time I cannot go to the kitchen to perform the magic. In vain, I explained the three states of matter to make him understand that liquids once poured down cannot be collected back though I knew he wasn’t going to buy my physics. I had to do something interesting for that’s the intention behind his tantrums. So, I called the aunty who lives downstairs and requested to keep a small bowl of milk ready. My son followed me with his empty mug to her house. I asked her if she had collected the milk which my son had poured on the floor. She gave a big laugh and refilled his mug with milk, understanding the little terrible things that little children can do.
There have been many in the last two years like he would wake up to morning and want the sun to go back home, he wouldn’t want his shadow to follow him, he would want to operate the hand gear in dad’s car (while the dad is driving)……..children’s world is silly, innocent, illogical and beautiful only if we are not their parents who have to handle it 🙂 It seems good fun to recollect these memories today but to have been there. at that point, as a mother, it was no fun! Yes, in time, they will outgrow this phase and begin to develop a logical sense. Yet, my son being a pre-schooler now, it’s still unpredictable when his vestigial form might resurrect from its dormancy.
Here’s a list of the posts in this series: