This is the one thing I have really struggled with the last two years. (Besides my car troubles the last few months. I mean, something that gets to me emotionally.)
Josh is mostly a good boy, but he has some bad habits and behaviours that make him a difficult child. There are a few things, and last Wednesday they all seemed to come together, along with my anger management which I took years to learn to get right. I’m not sure if I handled it correctly.
The day started off well enough… It was a public holiday and my mother made us waffles with the waffle maker I bought her for Christmas. She made a few, and we had a relaxing day watching some movies I’d downloaded. (King Arthur is excellent, btw.)
Then sometime in the afternoon the behaviour started. Josh wanted cooldrink, and I refused to buy more because he had selfishly finished it alone. But like his mother, he doesn’t take no for an answer. He just keeps right on asking. For two hours he carried on, and I refused. It went right past the point where my parents would have given me a hiding, but I don’t do that.
Eventually he decided to have the last waffle, that had been saved since morning. It wasn’t his waffle. He’d already eaten that. This was my mother’s one. But he didn’t listen and took it anyway. He covered it in Nutella – way too much, and then came to stand in the doorway and ask for cooldrink again. At this point, I’d just started to play King Arthur, and he’d deliberately gone to the kitchen to prepare his waffle in order to inconvenience me. So I started the movie without him. Then he went into sulking mode, standing in the doorway and mumbling some excuse why he couldn’t watch the movie. (Next thing he would have done is interrupt the movie every five minutes and ask questions, and beg for me to go and buy cooldrink.) When he gets like this, he’s impossible. It signals that he’s about to behave really badly and no matter what I do, it’s going to happen. So I mocked his mumbling excuse for not watching the movie, and my mother joined me. I’m good at that – I can mock anybody. (Yes, I shouldn’t have done that.)
Then he had one of his temper tantrums… He threw the waffle face down on the floor right there, then went into the room and started throwing things, including some of his toys. And I lost my temper. I went after him to the room, and took the one toy he had thrown, it’s called a Yakkity Yak (It’s a soft toy that you speak to and it plays back your voice chipmunk style) and I bought one for him and one for his sister when they visited us last Christmas, and said, “You throw your toys? I can do that too.” I threw it against the wall so hard, it smashed the insides completely. Then I took the waffle he’d thrown on the floor, smeared the Nutella all over his face, and made him sit in the corner like that, with his face covered in chocolate and him bawling his eyes out.
Then I felt bad. It happens every time. It was all over in a few minutes. I helped him wash his face, and we watched the movie with no more asking for more cooldrink. But still I felt like shit. And he kept the Yakkity Yak. He threw the insides away and said now it’s a hand puppet.
I’m not sure why I’m sharing this. I hate that so many people like to make as if everything is always perfect. Our life is most certainly not. We have our problems. Parenting is not always easy and I don’t always know what to do. Overall, it’s good. I love my son and he loves me, but sometimes he’s a right little bastard.