I had a whole post planned this morning. I was going to share cute photos of Bailey playing at the park this weekend.
Photos of how she got herself ready the other morning while I was getting dressed.
And a close up of the "wipstick" she put on.
But then, this morning happened. This morning was like one I had never experienced before. Bailey has thrown tantrums before, but they usually never lasted that long. But today, she was in rare form.
It all started over a pair of shoes. Yes, that's right, a pair of shoes. Bailey wanted to wear her black dress shoes with her jeans. Trying to get her to see my side, I tried to convince her that her tennis shoes would match better. When I obviously couldn't get her to see that black dress shoes didn't exactly go with jeans and a long sleeved tee, I was about to give in to her wardrobe request, until she unleashed the beast. The next thing I know she is screaming at me to put her black shoes on. I almost didn't know what to do. Bailey has NEVER talked to Nick or I like that before. I tried telling her that big girls don't talk like that, and that we ask for things that we want, we never demand. That only made the screaming worse. After several attempts to get her to calm down I decided it would be best if I left the room. I gathered up all of our things to head out the door and she was still in her room screaming about her shoes.
I went back into her room and tried to talk to her again. She wasn't having any of it. The next thing I know she is jerking her shoes (I had already put her tennis shoes on her) off and reaching for the black ones. I told her no ma'am, not if you're going to act like this. When you're ready to be a big girl and ask to wear your shoes like a big girl, then you can, but not one minute sooner.
This time she followed me out of her room screaming at me to "put them on" her. I went to put her coat on and she jerked her hand out of mine and told me not to touch her. At that, we went to time out, where she continued to scream that she wanted her black shoes on.
I explained to her that we never talk to mommy like that. Usually, she would stay in time out until she had calmed down, but by this point I was already running late to work, so I had to load her up in the car while she was still screaming at me. With no shoes on, I had to carry her tennis shoes out to the car with us. Once I loaded her into her car seat, I gave her another chance. I told her if she would calm down, stop crying, and ask nicely for her black shoes, that I would go in and get them. She said no, so I got in the car. She screamed the whole way to my mom's house and was still screaming when I left.
I tried to stay and talk to her there and calm her down, but she wasn't about to stop. I knew it would be better if I just left. It absolutely broke my heart to leave her that upset, over something so stupid, but I knew it was for the best.
Sure, I could have avoided all of this by just giving in, but I really want her to understand that she has to ask for things. If I had put the black shoes on her this morning after the way she acted, she would think that all she has to do is scream and cry and get what she wants. Well, that's not the way the world works, and that's not the way it works at our house.
I called my mom a little bit ago to check on her and she said she did finally calm down. After she stopped crying she went up to my mom, with her little fists clenched and said "I was really mad at my mommy." My mom said she tried not to laugh and said, "I know you were mad, but we can't always get what we want, and especially not when you act like that." And again Bailey just said, "But I was really mad at my mommy." I laughed, and cried a little bit, when mom told me that. Not really sure why I cried, I think it was a mixture of things. For one, it was the first time that she has really been mad at me. For another, I know it's just one of many times I will make her mad during the years to come.
The one good thing that came out of all of this, is that I realized today that patience can be learned. Never once during her tantrum did I raise my voice at her. I stayed calm the whole time and talked in a normal tone. This is something I would not have been able to do even a few months ago. Thank Heavens for small favors I guess. And here's to hoping I won't see another tantrum like this for a while!