The terrible twos are meant to start at two. The clue really is in the name.
But unfortunately, Georgia has. not. received. that. memo.
She’s started ten second tantrums at less than 14 months old. I’m not impressed, I honestly don’t know how to cope with them other than to ignore her or try and shift her focus with a half arsed attempt at “ooh look a raisin”. At the minute we have about a 50% success rate with that strategy… which to be honest could just mean that the 10 seconds are up and I’m kidding myself.
They’re a vision of my what’s to come and to be honest, I don’t like what I see.
You see, I’m a newbie to dealing with tantrums. I can’t even deal with my own crazy mood swings let alone try and help her cope with hers. How am I meant to teach her how to cope and understand if I don’t know myself?
I’d love to be one of those calm mums that always sees the bigger picture and keeps their cool.
The ones that know that it’s futile to be angry at them. They’re only little. They don’t understand. Yada Yada. I love those mums and aspire to be like them, but that’s just not me. I find dealing with my own anger a bit harder.
I know it’s wrong to be angry at her, but she still drives me to the edge of that angry cliff time and time again. I just can’t seem to pull myself back from it as I teeter on the edge. Food being thrown on the floor with glee, the radiators being smacked with a wooden utensil – transferring the paint onto the radiator, spitting on the floor because that’s the new fun thing to do…the list goes on.
They’re all fairly normal things, but usually result in me playing Cinderella for the day – but never getting to go to the ball. It’s frustrating and I hate cleaning.
It’s never just one thing, but a series of small, inconsequential things that are seemingly relentless. It’s enough to push me to my angry space. I imagine my angry space looks quite pointy and red and it’s sitting right at the bottom of that cliff. There’s only one way down with a long walk of shame and guilt back up again.
What makes it worse is that when I do fall over that cliff on the odd occasion, she just stares at me and giggles. She finds it hilarious. But she won’t always. She won’t always forgive me and it breaks my heart to think about it.
I know that being angry at her is wrong. I’ve watched loads of episodes of Super Nanny – I’d even say I know the formula, which certainly doesn’t include shouting.
But how do I deal with a toddler that doesn’t understand cause and consequence?
I’m only human. I get angry when I’m dealt ‘that’ card for a day. But the worst that happens is that I get a bit shouty.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all doom and gloom… 99% of the time (okay, probably more like 90% of the time) we’re laughing and giggling and having a great time, but what about that other, smaller percentage that’s fraught with frustration?
Am I going to be one of those mums that is a “Do as I say, not as I do” sort of mum? Shouting while telling her not to shout? Will I be one of those mean mums that shouts at their kids in the supermarkets… you know the ones “PINOT, GET YOUR F’IN ‘AND ‘AGHT THE F’IN TROLLEY”… at the top of their lungs? I flippin’ hope not. Or will I learn to deal with it and not shout as much?
I don’t want her to see me as a shouty mum. A loud mum yes, an embarrassing one yes and a funny one… well I hope so. But I want to learn how to deal with it before she starts seeing me differently.