My Kicking, Crying Child Was All of Us Today

 

My daughter had an epic tantrum at Target today, and I’m pretty sure she did it on behalf of all of us. I mean after this week, who doesn’t want to flail on the floor kicking and screaming while flinging Target Optical business cards in all directions?

We were at Target to buy a bike helmet. We found one that had cat ears and rainbows on it and that filled us both with joy. Then we wandered the Christmas section and delighted over the plush birdy ornaments and santa clauses and snow globes.It was the magical snowflake of Target trips. Until the FINAL FIVE MINUTES.

All I know is that I was in line frantically using my cartwheel app trying to scan the most expensive items for coupons, and my daughter took off. She ran to the drinking fountains. I yelled her full name get back here this minute and she came back with a little smirk. Oh yeah. This wasn’t looking good.

We finally checked out and I thought we were through the worst of it, but no. Something just snapped in my child. She wailed and screamed and at one point was lying on her back on the ground, her skirt flipped up, her face beet red, wailing. MOMMMMMY NOOOOOOO!!!!!

I tried to carry her out of the store, a colossal failure and one that I could have predicted but I tried anyway because what else could I do while pushing that ridiculous cart with the huge added on seats for children to have leg room and harnesses and whatever nonsense. God I love those carts though.

Well, the three-year-old kicked and screamed and in the process knocked over my iced coffee. I did not realize it but we were leaving a huge iced coffee trail behind us.

Insert the f. word.

It was the longest mile. I mean, seriously. How was I going to get out of this store?

Well, that’s when Jeanine came over. She was a fifty-something Target associate who was braver than the other three associates who were staring at the whole scene in disbelief. Dear sweet Jeanine put her arm on mine. She asked if there was anything she could do to help.

“There is nothing you can do” I said as I began to cry. Right there. Near checkout 10. Families silently rolled past me, their children staring.

What I wanted to say? 

“Jeanine we are all DOOMED! What the hell happened to our country! I’m so angry and frustrated and I feel so helpless. And yes I get why people want to give a middle finger to the establishment but really, electing he-who-shall-not-be-named??? It’s all too much. And why won’t my kid just sit. in. the. damn. cart?”

Of course, I didn’t say any of that. But Jeanine JUST KNEW I NEED HER TODAY. She quickly went work, fetching a a brown paper bag with little handles that she offered to my daughter.

“Would you like this special bag? Can you put your things in here and carry it all by yourself?” Then Jeanine pulled out her roll of stickers, commenting on each one as she placed them over each Target bullseye.

As if this wasn’t enough to earn her angel wings, Jeanine saw my empty coffee cup and she offered to get me a new coffee. SHE OFFERED TO GET ME A COFFEE. I told her it was ok, I hadn’t purchased at the in-store Starbucks–but I am pretty sure had I asked she would have gone and gotten a new one for me anyway.

I think we are going to need a lot of Jeanines moving forward. Neighbors, colleagues, mothers with stinker-butt children, if you are struggling, I promise to be there for you. (Assuming my child isn’t it booking down the street.)

Let us not forget, we belong to each other. Thanks for the reminder, Jeanine. 

 

 

 

If My Toddler Hosted Parties

Welcome, come in! Please take off your shoes. And your pants. And shirt.

Would you like a bite to eat? Please, follow me to the kitchen. I have pulled a chair up to the freezer door. Would you like a poggissle? I have red, purple, and orange.

No. You CAN’T HAVE THE RED. THAT’S MY RED!

I’m glad we worked that out. Please, have a seat in the living room.

Perhaps you would enjoy sitting over here in the dog kennel? I find it to be quite comfortable.

Perhaps you would enjoy sitting over here in the dog kennel? I find it to be quite comfortable.

Let’s watch TV. Here is Kate and Mim-Mim. What, the freaky purple alien rabbit scares you? I don’t care. This is the only show I watch. I watch it every morning and every night.

My mother is telling me that it is time for some food. If you are like me you won’t need any. However I do find it helpful for getting food to feed to the dog.

What’s that, you want your own plate? And a chair to sit in? Oh, that won’t be necessary! We can all sit on my mother’s lap. And eat off of her plate. And steal ice from her beverage.

What’s that, you want your own plate? And a chair to sit in? Oh, that won’t be necessary! We can all sit on my mother’s lap. And eat off of her plate. And steal ice from her beverage.

Well, this is boring. Let’s feed rice to the dog.

Oh, I’m sorry my mom yelled in front of you. She thinks the dogs should starve or something.

Apparently my parental figures are telling me this party is over. I disagree. Come, this way. Let’s hide behind the curtain. They will never find us there.

Oh, you are leaving now? I didn’t even notice. My mom is making me say goodbye. So I guess, goodbye?

Well you’ll have to excuse me. I have to go now put a tutu on the dog.

—-

If you enjoyed this, you might also like: When Family Yoga with Your Spirited Toddler Goes Very, Very Wrong