Monday, July 18th - 8:30am until 9:00am -
“Astrid you either need to ride in the stroller with your blanket or walk without your blanket. You cannot walk in the dirt and drag your blanket.”
Astrid stiffens up in the stroller “out mama out” – I take her out so she can walk – “no walk me stroller no walk” – Astrid throws herself onto the ground crying.
I sit down on the grass near the sidewalk finding the shadiest spot for my own comfort. I watch Astrid scream about being in the stroller or not being in the stroller – having her blanket or not having her blanket – walking or not walking – and then crying “home home me want to go home now mama.”
And me replying ” I am not the one keeping us from home. Figure out what you want and I will make home happen.”
More thrashing and crying ensues.
When I can no longer listen and witness the scene, and perhaps the neighbors are annoyed, I forcibly pick her up, put her in the stroller, and hold her down in the stroller as I strap her safely in and start the long three block walk home.
She screams for one block and settles in perhaps happy to realize we are going home.
Monday, July 18th – 9:00 until 10:00 am
“Do you want to help me vacuum, Astrid? We need to vacuum, mop and dust while your sisters are at camp this morning.”
Astrid replies that she wants her toy vacuum to “do like mama” -so I get hers out and start mine up.
Astrid throws her vacuum to the ground shouting “no like vacuum, me like mama!!” I ask her if she would like to hold my vacuum and help me. Astrid walks over and grabs on and starts to help – then drops it suddenly and shouts “no, me no like vacuum!’
“Astrid, you don’t have to vacuum – why don’t you pick out some books to read for when I am done.”
Astrid spends time going between my vacuum and her vacuum yelling at them both and making circle tracks in the carpet with her rantings and back and forth.
I finish vacuuming and get the mop out. Astrid asks for her mop. The same mop tantrum mirrors the vacuum tantrum. I wish the mop was at loud as the vacuum so I didn’t have to hear it.
I finish mopping and get the duster out. Astrid asks for her duster. The same duster tantrum mirrors the vacuum and mop tantrum.
I hum to myself which seems to infuriate her more.
Monday, July 18 – 10:00am until 10:15am
“Astrid do you want a snack?”
Astrid replies “yes mama, juice and cereal and milk and fruit snacks!” She smiles and I take a deep breath and think that we are going to move beyond the last one and half hours of getting it all wrong.
She sets up her little snack table and helps carry the snacks. She sits down and frowns. “Me no like cereal, me no like juice, me no like fruit snacks!” She starts to cry, gets down from her chair and throws herself onto the family room carpet.
“But Astrid this is what you requested for snack.”
“BUT OH ME NO LIKE SNACK!!” She wails.
I go to her table and take the snacks away. Astrid runs after me yelling “my snack, my snack, no touch my snack.” She holds onto my leg as I take her snack and throw it all into the garbage.
Monday, July 18 – 10:15 until 10:30
I decide that today nap time comes early. I grab her blankies and her and we go up to her bedroom. We rock for five minutes. She sobs. I tell her that I love her more than anything else in the world and that I am very sorry she had a hard morning. I wish her a pleasant sleep and say a silent prayer that her afternoon will be better.
I close her door softly behind me. I shake my head in disbelief at the last two hours of my life.
And I think to myself – I can tell my daughter is turning two this week.