Wednesday, May 21, 2008

My life has become a minefield. The explosions can come at any time, any place and often when I least expect them. I am living in fear of Marianna (who will turn 3 on Monday). Just so I don't forget when this phase passes (I am nothing if not an optimist!) I want to list the reasons for her recent tantrums.

1) This morning she had a major meltdown because Will announced that his toothbrush was new (actually 2 days old). Marianna proceeded to scream for a full 20 minutes that she too wanted a new toothbrush (her's is 2 weeks old).

2) Yesterday she had a major meltdown when we got to day care because I wouldn't let her take in the iPod Shuffle (her birthday present) which she had been listening to during the drive.

3) Many mornings she has major meltdowns because she doesn't want to get dressed (has gone to the garage naked on numerous occasions), doesn't want to brush her teeth and/or doesn't want to brush her hair.

This tantrum business is exhausting and really soul destroying for me as a parent. I just want to logic my way through it but (obviously) I can't and it is driving me totally nuts. It is the intensity and ferocity of these tantrums which is so bewildering and frightening for me. I honestly feel like I'm walking on eggshells every morning, waiting anxiously to see what little request or action will set her off. Then when we seem to have gotten through the morning peacefully something unexpected happens just as we're heading out the door (see previous entry regarding Teddy) or when we arrive at day care (see iPod drama above). Will had a few minor running around at the supermarket tantrums when he was ultra tired but nothing even close to this so I am so unprepared for what is happening right now.


Julia said...

Did she throw a tantrum on the day of her party? If not, throw her a party every day.

Kath Lockett said...

Hell..... I can understand why you feel so frazzled. To add a generalisation that's broader than my waistline, it's normally the GIRLS who are calmer than the BOYS but not in your case.

I know you're an incredibly smart, kind, brilliant and loving mum and maybe she's just trying to assert her own opinion in a life that's super organised (because it has to be). Offering her a 'choice' (ie as in two things that will be good for you - would you like to get dressed first, or clean your teeth first?)

Also, don't be afraid to seek help if you need it. A friend of mine has seen a behaviour doc re the temper of her six year old son and it's made a huge difference. The last thing you need is to be dreading the 'reaction' to each and every reasonable thing you do.

My thoughts are with you, mate.

Pixie said...

Dear Kaybee,
Ever heard ofo the 'terrible two's? (Which she technically is) Its a good thing that she's so perfectly at ease that she can let it rip! Its a phase, I recon. She's trying out terrorism, as a means of getting what she wants. It will go and when it does you'll wonder when it stopped. Its so draining when you have to live your life in fifteen minute incriments.
About a year ago Gigi was so awful I sought the advise of a psychologist (two kids from Romania) I know and value her very much. No sooner had I vented how much I needed a blue funk the phase had passed.
KB, I read your blog all the time... .you make me laugh! I'm setting up a blog to use as did you whilst in Colombi'a. I'll send an invitey thing. No news from the South American (see uou next tuesdays) yet. Boy am I pissed! 20 months! Anyway, thanks for sharing your beautiful family with me. Because I read yours I feel like we're staying in touch.
Hope to see you again sometime.