It’s never fun when your kids have a public meltdown and realizing that you may have been the cause of such an emotionally taxing event makes it even worse!
For the past several weeks, Gabi’s been working hard to earn 10 blue ribbons from her teacher. These little awards are given out for all sorts of good behavior in the classroom. Gabi’s been bringing them home and taping them to her bedroom door, anxious to get to her goal and earn the prize of a trip to the dollar store with me. 2 days ago she brought home her 10th ribbon. Whoo Hoo! We decided we’d make our trip out to the dollar store the following day. Happy, happy girl! On the way, I asked her if she’d rather get a drink at Starbucks or a milkshake or even a yogurt from the local yogurt shop. She answered “no” to all. Ok then! To the dollar store it is! But first I wanted to stop at a local department store that I’d been wanting to check out. Here is where I went wrong.
We meandered through the women’s shoe department and the home department and then stumbled upon the kid’s section. It wasn’t big, but it DID have a fancy, $10 Barbie puzzle that came with all manner of decor to liven it up after you’ve put it together. The idea of the dollar store went completely out of Gabi’s head. She wanted that puzzle! I pointed out $5 items instead, explaining that her reward was really only $1 ($2 on the outside, if she really couldn’t pick between 2 wonderfully eye-catching items). I said I was willing to go with one of the $5 items, but $10 was too much and I’d keep it in mind for her birthday. Once the meltdown started I even went so far as to say that there are often lots of things we want but that they just simply aren’t available to us. In my frustrated explanation I may have said something like, “if you’re offered a fancy cup of coffee, you don’t get to cry about wanting a new car!”. Maybe…
So I carried her into the dollar store, trying to lure her with the likes of fairy wands and whole bags of ring pops. Still the tears flowed. I finally let her know she could pick out 2 items and that I promised I would remember that she wanted that puzzle for the future. Still she cried. Eventually she picked out 2 items and we got back to the van where she started screaming that I needed to go back and return them because she DID NOT want them! Ugh~
We made it home where I asked her to go spend some time in her room and that if she really REALLY didn’t want the 2 items, I’d take them back in the morning. I made dinner feeling like the worst mom. I totally ruined her experience!
The good news is that she DID get over it. She came out and broke open the paints and the lovely, rose suncatcher and had a great time painting it. Then we hung it in her window. All good.
Lesson Learned! Stick with the plan!
Doing the Dance of the Children and Learning all the Way~