First of all I just want to say I absolutely love all of my children, but there are certain phases of life I think we could all do without. The terrible twos has got to be one of the big ones. And believe me when I say I know from here on out those temper tantrums just become bigger and louder. And eventually they get to the point where you are arguing life things with a teenager, which is always fun. The complete expert in everything with zero life experience. Yeah, I’ve still got a few things to teach you kid. I know somehow though we will get through all of these phases of life and I will look back and miss terribly when they were small. I probably won’t miss the teenage years too much, but hey teens have their good points even.
Currently in my house we have a moody teenager, an emotional preteen, a slightly defiant 4 year old, and what I can only describe as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde or an early onset of the terrible twos. That’s right, my youngest still has just over 4 months until she turns two, but she sure has been getting in some early practice on those temper tantrums.
When my daughter is in one of her Dr. Jekyll moods she is the sweetest baby girl. Full of hugs and kisses and smiles. I will say we do see more of her Dr. Jekyll side which is a huge relief. We obviously like that one much better.
Watch Out Mr. Hyde
My daughter has her Mr. Hyde act down pretty good though I must say. Let me paint a picture for you. An entire day spent at The Big E. Complete with only an hour long nap for the ride up there and plenty of excitement and stimulation on the day.
We leave at a decent time of night at 7:30. I pack the happy smiling baby into the car who instantly turns into Mr. Hyde. She does not want to be in her car seat. Of course she has no choice in the matter. I certainly can’t hold her. We naively assume that once we hit the road her screaming will stop. Did not happen. For half an hour she screamed bloody murder. To the point where in an area we weren’t hugely familiar with we could not concentrate on our GPS directions and therefore missed several turns and exit departures. We tried pulling over at one point to see if I could calm her down.
I did. As soon as I picked her up Mr. Hyde was back to Dr. Jekyll. She laid her head on my shoulder and snuggled in. We could not sit there and hope she would fall asleep quickly though. It was getting late and we needed to get the kids home and in bed for school the next day. So back into the car seat with hopes that she got enough snuggles, but as soon as I put her down she was arching her back and screaming bloody murder. I picked her up and instant silence. Put her down, instant screams. If it was safe for me to hold her in my arms for the car ride home I would have. That was not happening.
We had to get back on the road so I placed her back in her car seat and hoped for the best. Everyone was getting aggravated with her though. My 13 year old was yelling at her to stop, I was pleading with her, my 4 year old was trying to reassure her with a cute little song he made up, my ten year old was trying her hand in getting her to quiet down, and my husband continued to miss directions from Veronica, our GPS.
Nothing soothed her, even a kids CD in the CD player did not make her stop. Then finally, there were some breaks in her crying and she was off to sleep. We were already halfway home at this point and well aware of how to get home and not in need of our GPS directions anymore, but the entire car breathed a huge sigh of relief.
Then, we got home and I picked her up and she cried again. A quick jaunt indoors with her and a diaper change and off to bed for everyone and we finally got some peace and quiet.
Mr. Hyde reared his ugly head again the next day though. After her nap she did not want to be touched at all. Everyone seemed to be doing something that was just bugging the heck out of her.
Off to the eye doctor and she wasn’t too bad until her brother began pushing her around in the toy room they have there. After that Mr. Hyde was back and we were still at the eye doctor waiting to have my two oldest daughter’s eyes checked after being dilated. We were also trying to pick out glasses and there was the baby pulling out every pair of glasses. Of course my son was having an off day too. When we went back for that final check of their eyes, I tried leaving my daughter in the waiting room with my husband, but she was having nothing of it. So I grabbed her and then had to chase her all around the doctor’s room. We even had a full fledged temper tantrum on the floor. I bet the doctor and everyone in that office was happy to see us go, but the fun did not end for us there.
Nope, I put her into her car seat again and she twisted and rolled and tried to get out of her car seat. And once I got her strapped in we got to listen to her scream. We were only five minutes or so from home so I figured we’d have to hear it the whole way, but suddenly the crying stopped. I asked my oldest if she fell asleep and she said no, she’s staring at her shoes and smiling. What? She’s staring at her shoes and smiling? She was just in full fledged temper tantrum mode and now she’s happy and entertained by her feet? See what I mean, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
I Know Why This Happens
Well, I don’t fully understand why she goes from extremely happy to extremely mad in 0-60 in less than 60 seconds or even the other way just as fast. That will forever baffle me. But I know that the issue with the terrible twos is the inability to speak their wants effectively. And of course we are working on that with speech therapy.
Siblings always have a way of exacerbating a situation too. Her brother who’s trying to stake his claim on something will do things that get her going. Her older sister will get in her face when she does not want anyone in her space, and her oldest sister is pretty good at taunting her at times. And no one does it on purpose. They either think they are helping or are just being territorial themselves and before I know it things have erupted.
Then there is also the not feeling well (she has a cold) and tired factor (remember only an hour nap with a day filled with over stimulating activities). Our lifestyle is not always conducive to having a baby around. We can’t not do things for the older children because of fear of what she’ll turn into. If this is a glimpse of what’s to come with her in the teenage years, then that should definitely be fun with her.
I guess all we can do is our best to make sure she is well rested and continue to work on those communication skills.
What has been your experience with the terrible twos?