Yesterday I shared the story of my oldest being “that child with that mom” in Target when she was about 6 years old. I feel it is only fair to share the love I have for temper tantrums and enlighten all of you as to how stubborn my son can be.
Picture it…two years ago. He is 4, almost 5. Every year we have the same conversation about what he will be able to do when he is one year older. These are usually things that he can do now, but won’t do until the age number changes. This year it was wearing his backpack. Everyday I pick him up from daycare and everyday I have to carry his backpack. It is not heavy. It only has a few papers in it, but still Mom has to carry it. On the way to school that day we were talking about him being a “big boy” and carrying his own backpack. He said he would when he was 5. I managed to convince him to practice for this wonderful event.
I arrive at the daycare at 3:00. He puts on his backpack and heads for the door.
“Hold up buddy, you need your coat.”
He looks at me from the doorway and tells me that he has his backpack and doesn’t need a coat. I wait by his coat hook and he eventually walks over to me. I reiterate that it is cold outside and we wore the coat to school, we will wear it home. He has THAT look. He begins to shake his head at me. I try again. Still no go. Bless those daycare teachers, they try to convince him to wear a coat. STILL no go. It is not happening. I try to make him put the coat on. He begins to cry, and fight me, causing a scene in front of his friends. So I do what any sane mom who is SO ABOUT TO LOSE IT would do. I pick him and the coat up and I go out into the hallway. This mom doesn’t play that way. Usually mama don’t have time for this, but Jack picked the day that I could wait him out. Thank goodness it was Wednesday, the day that I did not have to rush home for anything.
Jack and I are standing in the hallway. Moms come and go. They try to help by prompting him. He has stubbornly refused to put on his coat. He has walked toward the outside door, intending to leave–until he notices that I am not following. Yes, oh son of mine, march to your own drum, but you have met the master. I march to my own drum and mine is louder than yours. I will win this tug of war we have going on. He returns to me and tries to pull me down the hall. Hello! I’m bigger, good luck with that.
More moms come and go, including a wonderful friend of mine. She uses her younger daughter to show Jack how to put on a coat. He is looking at everyone like we are the crazy people who have dropped into his world and turned it upside down. Yes, we are. There is snow outside and you will wear a coat and carry your backpack like any other boy your age!! She leaves as well with a parting “text me when you finally leave.” I laugh and reply “I will win this one.”
Jack has now collapsed to the floor, in a heap, moaning about the horridness of wearing a coat. I repeat in my super calm, super sweet, nothing is bugging me mom voice “We can’t leave until you have your coat on. It is cold outside. Come and put it on.” I continue to hold the coat out to him, and this time, instead of taking the coat and throwing it to the ground, he puts it on. We walk outside hand in hand. He is laughing at walking through the snow and I am wondering were the crazy person went and grateful that my sweet boy is back. It only took us 70 minutes to get here. Yes, that’s right 70 minutes to put on a coat. 70 minutes I waited this boy out to prove a point. I am MOM and you will do as I requested. We haven’t had a problem like that since. Lesson learned for both of us.