Thursday, April 03, 2008

Library Drama

A few days ago I mentioned that Isaac woke up incredibly early one morning and began playing quietly in his room. Although this might sound like an endearing toddler story, let me assure you that indeed it is not.

Two year + 4:??am wake-up time = large lump of whiny, grumpy mess

Our time-out carpet never had the opportunity to be lonely Tuesday morning.

Despite such behavior issues, I felt compelled to load the children up and attend our local storytime. The weather has been less than favorable this week and I knew we needed an excuse to get out of the house. Besides, Isaac adores books so I figured there was no way he could be grumpy at the library.

We roamed the aisles selecting our books, then found our spot on the reading carpet in the story time room. Everyone was made a bit uncomfortable by the father in attendance who decided preschool storytime was the equivalent to happy hour at his local neighborhood bar and began making advances at the sweet, shy librarian. A few stories were read and then everyone stood for the action song.

Apparently the idea of singing the action song made Isaac thirsty because he whispered that he would like his "fresh apple juice, peas". When I informed him that his sippy cup was in the car because the library did not allow food or drinks inside, it was if I had informed him all apple trees had been destroyed and the world rid of his juice forever.

The boy fell apart.

Grateful that loud music was now playing and children were dancing, I gave Isaac "the look" and hissed in his ear to get it together or we were gone.

He wailed louder.

At this point I realized an exit would be neccessary. Fortunately E. was still in her stroller. I gathered our things, scooped Isaac up, and managed to manuever the stroller around various toddlers doing the hokey pokey. Once outside the storytime room, Isaac began crying that he would like to rejoin the group. I gave him a chance to calm down, to which he began to cry louder, "I not want to have a good at-ti-tude. I not want to change my behavior."

Not exactly the calm I was looking for.

Quickly realizing that we were entering major tantrum territory and beginning to feel the earnest stares of the librarian burn holes in my turned back, I decided it was best that we leave our library books behind and head for home. This decision was obviously not met with a round of applause by Isaac.

I managed to get him out of the library into the atrium (with Evelyn loudly telling everyone "hiiiiiiiii!" as we exited) when I realized there was no way I would be able to carry a wiggling boy and navigate a stroller down the winding ramp and through the parking lot. It was then that the Super Mommy skills kicked in and I was able to removed Evelyn from the stroller and stuff Isaac in (quite unwillingly) all in one motion.

We made it safely back to casa de phillips, although my ears might have suffered some minor damage due to the crying coming from the backseat. Isaac was served an early lunch and then tucked into bed for a long nap. By the time he and Raffes were under his polka-dot quilt, his positive attitude had returned.

The public tantrum is likely a right of motherhood. We rarely see such behavior from Isaac, but usually lack of sleep is the motivating factor in such incidents. A friend told me the other day how she took her daughter shopping at Wal-Mart after a napless afternoon, where a public tantrum errupted. Such behavior forced the mom to practically throw her daughter into the restroom at Wal-Mart in order to allow other bargin shoppers to hunt for their goods in peace.

Where has your child had a total meltdown and how did you handle it?

By the way, yesterday afternoon...quite randomly...Isaac became terribly concerned that we had left a stack of books on top of the shelf at the library. He was worried that A. Other kids would get them and B. We did not put them back in the right place.


Jennifer said...

hey, at least he cared about the books!

Cooper has meltdowns too when he's tired. He's got some lungs so it gets quite embarrassing when he starts to scream. I keep telling myself that this too shall pass........

Sydni said...

Sadly and quite embarrassing to me, I have meltdowns from lack of sleep... I know exactly how Isaac felt.

Phillips Family said...

Me too, Syndi!

margk said...

Me, too, on the meltdowns. The other day I cried over not being able to find my sunglasses. I felt like a two year old with the way I was acting.

Patrick had very few meltdowns as well. I remember one in particular at Dillards with my MIL and we had to leave. When we got back to her house he refused to get out of her 2 door car, so we just left him. It was cold outside and the garage door was shut, so not a big deal. He eventually came inside and was nicae again.

Shanta said...

um, I just experienced our first meltdown this week at a funeral, of course. I watched the whole ceremony from the foyer. I had to go and take Baby along because it was a coworker that sat right next to me for three years. She wasn't a fan.

JanMary said...

Oh yes - I too have a few meltdown occasions forever scorched into my memory - but if it is all spiraling rapidly out of control, I too just leave. It may be like carrying a protesting octupus, but once back in the car, on MY teritory, control is rapidly regained.