Monday, 22 April 2013

A Very Public Meltdown

It's happened. We have had our very first extreme tantrum in public. And I survived...just!

On Sunday we decided to go to a garden centre about 30 minutes drive away as it sold a particular brand of paint (I am DIY-Obsessed at the moment).

The 5.15am wake-up call from Monkey had meant I wasn't in the best of moods when we set off and I had a feeling we shouldn't all be going.
Downfall number 1 was that Monkey very almost fell asleep in the car, he was just closing his eyes as we pulled into the car park. He did not like being quickly awoken.

Downfall number 2 was that he then asked for a drink. We were just popping to a garden centre I had not brought anything with me. He did not like that I couldn't give him a drink immediately.

Downfall number 3 was that when we found the in-store cafe I, in a fit of sleep-deprived hunger, thought it would be a good idea to sit in the cafe and have a giant slab of chocolate cake.

To set the scene I should probably add that this was the world's quietest cafe and Monkey was the only person under 18.

The meltdown began with a refusal to sit in the highchair. We've had this battle before and it's normally more of a whimper which can be stopped with the promise of cake - but the combination of being tired and hungry meant that Monkey went from nought to meltdown in seconds.

I couldn't calm him down and very quickly I could hear the tuttering begin. I quickly took him outside the door where a quick cuddle calmed him down. And so I decided to try again.

We went back in but hubby hadn't moved the cake - it was smack-bang in front of Monkey as I sat him in the highchair. And so with no bib on or sleeves rolled up he just stuck his face in. Literally. I think he knew I would take it off him and so he tried to put as much of himself over it as he could while he had the chance.

Any attempt to stop him meant screaming and crying. It was so embarassing, I'm trying to tell him to be quiet, trying to tell hubby not to shout as people are looking - all while watching every head turn to look at us.

On reflection while the meltdown was bad I could have dealt with it had it not been for the accusatory stares - it was just too much knowing I was being judged when I knew full well that I wasn't doing a good job.

It was a good 15 minutes to get him to calm down (outside, obviously) and I think we all felt a little battered and bruised after it.

Hubby and I did high-five though, yes people had judged us and yes we didn't deal with it as well as we could have. But that was the first big meltdown in public and we had survived.

That's it now though - no more please Monkey.

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