When my son was 18 months peeling a banana the wrong way would set off a tantrum with the most adverse affects. Okay it wasn’t the end of the world but it felt like it at the time. There was nothing I could do to calm him down. It was a mystery to me. I would try everything to pacify the situation although I had no idea what was wrong or what to do. He became a totally different kid, throwing himself down, slamming doors; he was a back arching ninja. If we were out people would stare like I was the worst mother in the world, asking themselves,“ Why can’t you calm your own child down?” or “What did you do to him?” I would think the same thing and the tantrums would last anywhere from ten minutes to over an hour.
Time would stand still and there was nothing funny about it. Except I was that mom in the super market now, the one I used to stare at before I had kids and think, “Oh my God lady get a grip he’s shorter than you!” There are a million parenting books on what should be done at this moment in time but none of them had ever met my son.
After dealing with one I felt like I had had the crap beaten out of me, I became physically and emotionally burnt out and my son he would go about his day like nothing had happened. I felt like I was in a Twilight Zone episode, remember the one when all the grownups would tiptoe around and give the kid anything he wanted or else he would make them disappear into the abyss. I would do anything to avoid a fit, Toys R Us, chocolate.
Then one day, I wasn’t in the mood and as he started his tantrum I told him he was on his own. I told him if he needed anything I would be in the other room, sippy cup, hug etc., but it was his thing and it wasn’t going to wreck my day. That’s when it all changed, once I wasn’t emotionally involved and he wasn’t getting anything out of me they just stopped as fast as they started and that was the last I saw of the back arching Ninja.