Mishty has now learnt how to say no. Over and over. I try to time these outbursts for some musical entertainment:
Me: “They try to make me go to rehab and I say…..”
Mishty: No, no, noooo!
Except my timing sucks and this has never happened. My dreams of recording a cute baby edited Amy Winehouse video that goes viral and creates infamy remain shattered – Mishty does not perform on demand.
I was told that tantrums happen when they are two. Mishty is only 15 months but already showing the full force of his rage. Either he is advanced or people have been lying to me.
I check with my other mum friends and theirs are doing the same. One child had a tantrum over an apple – it was being placed in the fruit bowl which caused tremendous distress for no obvious reason. Mishty had a similar episode over an apple – but of the Mac kind. Hubby had left his new shiny laptop on the sofa, just out of reach for Mishty. He stood on his tiptoes and stretched until he could just about tug it. I swooped in, pushed it away and handed him his own musical toy laptop. He impatiently shoved it away and tried again to reach the real laptop. I tried to firmly direct him back to his one only for him to throw it across the room in a rage, presumably thinking ‘THIS IS SHIT! There’s only six buttons here and it’s shaped like a cat. I can’t even Facetime on this piece of junk!’
Sometimes he cries when I don’t let him play with bleach or when I take the knife away from him. I shamefully have acquiesced to his demands for the toilet brush though. Sometimes I feel like I am being bullied by a two foot midget in my own home.
The most recent tantrum occurred last week when I picked Mishty up from nursery. He was so happy to see me but this quickly changed once he saw the buggy. He looked at me like, ‘Er… I don’t think so. I am tired from playing all day and I NEED to be carried ALL THE WAY HOME!’ I tried valiantly to get him in but he was resisting with all his might. Ten frustrating minutes of him screaming, wriggling, running off, standing up and slithering down and I had managed to forcibly strap him in. Still screaming, the only way I could get him to stop trying to burst through the harness like the Incredible Hulk, was to let him hold my finger. This instantly calmed him down but left me leaning awkwardly over the buggy or semi-crouching to the side as I didn’t have a parent facing seat and Mishty’s arms were too little. Not being able to maintain this position for long, I had to let go and just hoped that he would fall asleep on the way. No such luck. He screamed hysterically the whole way home. By the time we got in, he was so angry he stomped off to the kitchen to bang on the cupboards, lay down on the floor and even did a dramatic piece of headbanging against the wall which only made him cry harder as it hurt his head. Kill. Me. Now.
These are the times when you close your eyes, sigh and wish someone else would just take over. Instead, you have to muster enough energy to chase after him when he runs off and tries to hide in an impossibly small space and then gets even angrier when he can’t fit in there and starts throwing around expensive breakables like your phone or iPad.
When they are not having a tantrum, they are being exceedingly wilful. Here are some examples:
1. Mishty refuses to lie still when I try to change his nappy. He runs off mid change and lets loose a huge stream of wee all over the carpet. He does this three times in ONE WEEK.
2. Mishty never wants the fun to stop. At the end of bath time he splashes excessively if he sees me coming close with the towel and then refuses to budge even once I have drained the bath. Once scooped up, he pushes me away with all his strength until in danger of falling and smashing his skull on the tiles. Whoever said bath time was relaxing was clearly an idiot.
3. Mishty loves going outside. He brings you his coat and shoes to tell you he wants go out. If you don’t get the message, he bangs on the front door repeatedly. If this doesn’t work he cries and lies at the entrance and tries to put on my trainers. If we make it outside, a great time is had until it is time to go back inside. He then sits on the gravel refusing to budge until you hoist him up in an arm lock and drag him kicking and screaming back in.
4. Mishty has a strong grip. Unfortunately, this is usually for things he is not allowed. Even though you are stronger and can take it off him there is a strong chance that you will break their arm in the process so a gentle tug of war takes place instead and somehow when you finally win, there’s tears all round. This is particularly bad when it comes to the dustpan and brush. And cake.
Life can be unfair. You can’t always get what you want… but at least you can always have a tantrum about it!