It was one of those evenings. Where motherhood was more trying.
The little boy threw a tantrum because I wouldn’t let him cruise around his pram in the train nor in the supermarket.
So I did what I thought best could pacify him. I held him closely in one hand, pushed the pram with the other while stopping to pick things that I needed from the various shelves in the supermarket intermittently. But that didn’t suffice. He wanted to do something which he had so much fun doing with papa just 2 days ago He wanted to keep pushing the pram on his own till it hit a wall/someone/came to a halt. (Psst: the Bo apologized the moment I related the incident to him, knowing that he attributed to Liam wanting his way with the pram)
I completed ignored his plea & fuss of course. I just wanted to pay for the groceries quickly, hope to get a taxi despite the heavy downpour and get him home where he cruise himself silly.
And that’s when it became even more trying.
In between trying to grab my groceries with one hand from pram basket to counter and paying… the little fella started to cry, arch his back, kicked and pushed me away. “Tsk tsk”, I started to hear other people make sounds around me. I ignored those very unnecessary, judgmental sounds.
Then there was the long snaking taxi queue which put me in bigger misery. It was raining, I couldn’t get through the lines of the 3 taxi companies for a good 10 minutes, the chungkin was crying & screaming because I wouldn’t let him snatch the phone from me. Some folks tried to conveniently cut the queue thinking that the lady-with-a-pram-full-of-groceries-and-a-wailing-baby would be too busy to notice. But they were not worth my effort and depleting energy to manage with. My 9.6kg son was. Thank goodness some 12 minutes later of listening to music on loop, we finally got a taxi booking!
While on the journey home, I reflected on my actions. Perhaps I could have handled the situation better instead of ignoring Liam. Perhaps I shouldn’t have zoned out and focus on finishing my tasks and should have made an effort to soothe the wailing and whining that was probably irritating everyone else instead. I probably deserved those unforgiving looks. But hey, I did what was best for us both at that time. At 13 months, I don’t think the little fella would have any patience for one of those “learning to deal with frustrations” talk.
Ironically I used to be one of those people who wondered which parents could actually bring themselves to ignore their wailing kids. Till I became a parent myself. Managing kids’ tantrums are without a doubt difficult situations to be in. And what makes it more challenging is that it’s often unintentional because they don’t yet have the skills to express themselves in other desired ways hence the sudden outburst. Yet sometimes we lose our cool too quickly.
Definitely, there will be more tantrums coming my way as the boy grows up. During those moments of “why oh why!”, I hope to remind myself to: take a deep breathe, think happy stuff, nurture the positivity out of the situation and say OHMMMMMMMMM.But if all fails, at least I tried!
Meanwhile, what made my day today was seeing my little fella opening his eyes and putting his arms around me the moment I was home. He’s getting soooo good at tugging those heartstrings.