Jenny is the thirty something mother of two little girls that are eighteen months apart. They are now one and two years old. She currently is a Stay at Home Mom and enjoys writing on her blog Sippy Cup Chronicles and sharing her experiences with other parents.
Yup, I have become “That” Mother! You know the one. She has two screaming kids close in age and she is determined to finish her shopping even though it is bothering everyone around her. Yeah that is me now.
It was a normal day. I got my two girls, who are one and two years old, ready for an outing to Target. Target just so happens to be one of my favorite places on this Earth. So I packed the diaper bag with treats, bottles and sippies. I was just going to Target, what could possibly happen? It would be a quick trip. The girls had slept well and it was right before lunchtime. I was good to go with two happy toddlers.
I was in denial.
“Toddler” should have been the operative word here. As we all know toddlers never follow the plan. They just don’t go with the flow.
I usually like to put them both in a regular cart, but today I had to use one of those massive ones. You know the ones….They have the spot for the two kids to sit in a seat, but it feels like you are driving a bus around the store. Yeah that kind.
I get them both in the seats, strapped in. Totally anxious that my one year old is even sitting in this seat….for fear she may just fall out, but I remember that she is old enough now to do this.
Everything was fine. I got all of the formula I needed. I packed the cart (this was my last formula buying trip).
Then it happened. My 2 year old saw a rubber ducky in the bath and potty section….and my lovely day at Target came to an end. She loves rubber duckies…..enough said.
So I tried to distract, etc., but I finally caved in and gave it to her. However, a new problem then happened in the fact that she wanted all of the packaging off. Yeah that could not happen. So she screamed and screamed, causing my one year old to scream.
And now I had two screaming toddlers in Target with a cart full of groceries. I ran to the check out, but of course as my luck was going on this day….there was a line. I continued to try to distract and bribe to get them to stop crying but it was way beyond that now.
Funny enough there were about three pregnant girls standing around and they kept looking at me giving me the “I am never going to allow my children to act like that in public look” or the “My children will never ever act like that….because they are going to be perfect look” you know what I mean. I was one of them once too…but they can call me in about two years and tell me how that is going.
I made it out of Target and got the girls settled with some snacks and opened the rubber ducky for a very happy, quiet ride home.
However, this particular shopping trip got me thinking.
I always said I wouldn’t bribe, etc., but when you are in public and have two children screaming with everyone looking at you….do you really make it a learning experience. I know I “should” have walked away from the rubber ducky. I know I “should” have not bribed and ignored the temper tantrums that were going on, but I started to feel the pressure of those around me.
At home when there are temper tantrums I usually ignore and redirect. Most of the time it works, but there are times that some sort of timeout should be in order. Please tell me how you are supposed to put a two year old in timeout, because mine just runs away!
One thing I have learned that does help and I was taught how important this is for discipline when I got my Elementary Education degree, is using positive reinforcement. When my daughter’s are playing well together or the older one shares with her younger sister, or she does something positive I make a big deal out of it. I tell her how great it is and I clap. This seems to help somewhat.
I became “that” mother. The one I never thought I would ever be. I thought that I would have the perfect discipline system, being I have a background in Elementary Education. Nope, I am learning right along with everyone else….It is a totally different beast when it is your child!
Thanks so much, Jenny, for sharing! If you’d like to read more from Jenny, you can follow her on Twitter.