It was a fit of biblical proportions. The likes of which I have never endured in my entire four year tour of parenting. We had what I thought was a fabulous morning followed by an uneventful lunch. I needed to go to Walmart for some random things and since summer is winding down, I wanted to see if the pool toys were on sale. Ryan has a birthday coming up and we are leaning towards having a pool party.
Normally I don’t do Walmart. Especially when I am outnumbered. But I had been lulled into a false sense of security by the boys and their seemingly good moods.
After hitting the jackpot and loading the cart up with all kinds of fun pool stuff Ryan spots the Spider-Man section. His eyes glaze over and his breathing slowed. I knew what was coming and I tried to divert his attention but it was too late.
“Look! There’s Spider-Man, Mommy”
He tells me this like he’s doing me a favor. Like I had been looking all over for Spider-Man and today was my lucky day because he found it for me.
“I can get this one. See this sign over here? It says you can get it for me.”
That’s his new thing now. Instead of trying to talk us into giving him snacks or letting him watch Noggin for eight hours straight on his own, he points at random pieces of paper or billboards and informs us that it’s a sign and that it commands us to do whatever is on his mind at the moment.
I guess I should be glad that he’s reading fictional signs and not hearing voices instead.
Anyway, long story still way too long, I said no. Calmly. Firmly. With love.
I scooped him up and put him the cart behind Drew on top of the mountain of beach balls, pool dart games, floating sea lions and water guns.
He cried. He screamed. He hyperventilated. His head spun around three times and I could actually see the earth’s surface begin to crack over in bedding. He cried so hard that he gagged and threw up all over the sea lions. Ok, he didn’t actually throw up. But he did his best impersonation of throwing up. Complete with stomach holding and eye rolling.
I kept going. I was determined to get what I had come for and I was not going to let my three-year-old dictate what I was going to do and blah blah blah what all the parenting magazines say.
I repeated my mantra as I slowly walked through the store.
You are ok. Stop crying. You are ok. Please stop crying. You are ok. Stop crying. You are ok.
People were coming from as far away as the produce aisle because they had heard a rumor going around Walmart that there was a fit going on in the cereal section and that the momma was bound to lose her shit at any moment. Seriously, people were seeking me out and standing nearby to keep an eye on the impending action.
Finally, Drew had had enough. He looked back at Ryan and then gazed up at me with quivering lips and began to wail. My right eye started to twitch ever so slightly and I started doing the nervous laugh. You know the laugh. The one that sounds all high and trembly because at any moment you are just gonna start screaming and screaming and screaming and screaming. And then more with the screaming……
I gave in and made my way to the register to check out with the wailer and the shrieker. People parted like the red sea as I made my way towards the front of the store. They were careful not to get too close as they weren’t quite sure that the momma was going to make it of there without losing her right eye due to the twitching. I think that the cashier actually forgot to scan an item or two because she was trying to get me and my snot covered screaming kids as far away from her as quickly as possible.
Hey, saved some money. Maybe I’m on to something.
If you think that was bad, you should have witnessed the seizure he had when I told him that we would not be renting Shark Boy and Lava Girl on the way home as previously promised. He kicked and cried and sputtered, but in the end he morphed back into the calm and loving boy that I gave birth to and it was as if the incident had never happened.
My friend Gena assures me that I will eventually become immune to the humiliation. I will just have to take her word on that. 🙂