You, over there, with the whining child!! Oh, that’s me!
I was in a very fun craft store the other day buying a birthday gift for a friend when my “angelic” four year old spotted the strategically placed toys at the checkout line. She asked me for one of those stuffed animals with the really popped out eyes, to which I nicely said she couldn’t have. She then asked me for sugary pellets (also known as hyperactivity in a tin), then it was on to a truffle of chocolate (which I should have said yes to because I am pretty sure a bittersweet truffle would have taught her a lesson!). This went on for a few minutes before I could see her starting to get mad that she wasn’t getting what she wanted. I could feel the shopper behind me watching, waiting for me to give in to avoid a tantrum. The checkout girl actually commented that she was a very “persistent” child. I felt a little judged in that moment, like my reaction and subsequent actions were on display for all to comment. I was so tempted to give in and let her have the 99 cent toy, but I just wouldn’t bring myself to crack under the pressure. So, what did I do? I told my four year old to put it on her Christmas list, and that maybe Santa would buy it for her. I didn’t think for a second she would buy into it, but she did! She said ok, put everything back and walked out of the store holding my hand. Whew, crisis averted.
Having a persistent child is a good thing. I felt that the cashier at the craft store was almost mocking my child and in a way letting me know that “I had my hands full with this one.” Truth is, I wouldn’t trade her persistence for anything. We all have unique challenges with our children, and it’s up to us to figure out how best to deal with their personalities. Sometimes it’s giving in, sometimes it’s standing your ground- but either way, we need to realize that we are all great moms raising great kids.
So give yourself a break if you were the one in the grocery store today with the screaming child—tomorrow it will probably be me, and next time it is, I will just shrug and say, “Well, at least she’s persistent!”
This quote has stuck with me since becoming a mom, and I hope it gives you some inspiration too. “Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do.” – Benjamin Spock