Erik Quinn: The Heart of a Family: Tantrum #1578

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Tantrum #1578

Random Thought of the Day: Movies I will never watch again include Forrest Gump and Happy Feet. My heart remains much too raw.

The sun is shining, and it is almost hot outside. It is hard to believe we had an inch of snow on the ground less than a week ago. Erik spent quite some time outside today with both of us. As I sat under one of Brian's baseball caps behind a pair of dark sunglasses to shield me from the sun, I almost finished another book. If it were not for the threat of my fair flesh spontaneously combusting, I would have finished it. Erik's neck is already beginning to pick up a hint of a suntan. He didn't get that gene from me.

Erik had the worst tantrum yet last night. It lasted almost an hour. Of course, we were completely alone in the house. It included nonstop crying. Rivers of snot snaking down his face. Trying to topple my bar stools over. Slamming his door over and over, screaming, "No door!" Refusing anything he loves. Pushing me. Hitting me. Being completely inconsolable. This all stemmed from me telling him he could not have a bath until he had eaten dinner. He was fourteen kinds of pissed off. It became so completely ugly that I began to lose my temper. I felt myself slip. I had to shut myself in my own room to regain my composure. Finally, I stripped him of his clothes and placed him in a warm bath, wondering if perhaps he was coming down with something. I went around the corner and sat down on the couch, listening to his sniffles subside and his charming babbling begin. He talked about how nice the water felt and began speaking loud enough for me to hear, starting up a friendly conversation. While I felt like a heel for giving into his demands, I felt the only other option was me completely losing my temper and saying or doing something very inappropriate. I put a tray of french fries in the toaster oven, which we enjoyed after his soak in the tub. Finally, I crawled into bed with him to read a couple of books and cuddle, which delighted him to no end. I held him and told him that I loved him. He thanked me as if he had been happy all afternoon and asked me to give the glow-in-the-dark planets suspended from his ceiling by fishing line a tap so they would swing above his bed when I turned off the light.

I tapped each planet, rocking the entire solar system, blew him a kiss, turned off his light, and shut the door.


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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gua said... Wow! You're some kind of mom.

Love, Mom

7:50 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

Let me just start by saying you are a wonderful patient mother. That said let me tell you this because it will make you feel better when you lose your temper, and believe me at some point you will. Amber my 22 year old, and Grace my 7 year old were cut from the same cloth. That of fit throwers. Don't beat yourself up. I have been known to snap and have my eyes bulge, veins pop out of my neck, and yell and not even remember what it was that I said. I even threw a basket of silk flowers at Amber one time. Yeah, not a proud moment, plus the baby's breath was a pain to clean up. I do have to say that I have learned a thing or 2 over the years and I have discovered this. Most temper tantrums happen because they are just plain exhausted. I am not going to lie, if Noah starts I am putting ear plugs in.:) Hang in there kiddo. You are not alone.

Mom of professional fit throwers

8:23 PM  
Blogger Teresa & Shawn said...

It's the end of the day that counts, right? We haven't had those terrible drawn-out tantrums with Clare, but the ones we have throw me through a loop most of the time. You may have felt out-of-control, but it sounds like you did everything right - took a break when you needed it and ended the day on a wonderful note. I don't think it's giving in to give him the bath. He needed that to calm himself down. And, after all, you did wait an hour!

5:59 PM  
Blogger Every minute counts.... said...

I am so sorry that things are so hard for you right now. With your friend's illness and now the temper that comes and goes. At least it seems you found a key to give yourself a little glimps at how good it can be again. Don't you just love baths?


6:01 PM  
Blogger Penny said...


Thinking of you here.....Keith can throw a tantrum with the best of them. Sometime I feel as if my head is just going to explode. Sometimes I feel like I am just having an out of body experience, sometimes I just sit and cry right along with him....

6:54 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

Oh, the tantrums Michaela used to throw...WOW!! Unfortunately, they came on strong around age 2 1/2, just as we got her diagnosis. The good news, they subsided as her language, understanding, and communication matured. Probably around age 4.
She now yells at me quite effectively with words and LOTS of "tude".

4:28 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

A moment in time for Erik, an eternity for you. I am sorry, my dear. What you did in the heat of the moment was great, you did just what needed to be done at the time for you and him. We are all just white-knuckle driving it at times.

9:31 AM  
Blogger Heather said...

One of my best friends Dad was just Diagnosed with LG too. He kept it from them from Oct. until March. She is devestated, but trying to enjoy her Dad to the fullest.

Hey, we all lose it once in awhile. The one thing that makes me feel better about it is that after he freaks and I freak, we are back to our happy old selves in no time at all. Our moods can change like the weather. Sometimes you gotta give even though you know it isn't the appropriate thing to do. it is just plain

9:58 AM  
Blogger Aspen said...

We are starting to see more and more of these kinds of tantrum's at our house as well. Usually starts by not allowing Daven to go outside and swing. (Either because it's 2 am or much too cold for little boys.) Ours never entail words of course, but the screaming and tears don't seem to stop for a good 30 minutes. I know all too well your frustrations.

1:01 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

oh Nance - i reckon you are a fantastic mother! You handled the situation like a text book :)
- i have a much shorter fuse than i used to and find myself saying innapropriate things quite a lot - Jai doesnt do it as much anymore but he had a complete meltdown tantrum yesterday that lasted 2 hours until i finally gave in. I have since been cursing myself for giving in knowing full well that the next one could now last twice as long. As far as Forest gump goes - i once thought it a light harted comedy until the last time i watched it and spent the entire time crying.
Love ya,

3:50 PM  
Blogger All moments remembered said...

Just dropped by to say HELLO Friend and give you hugs!! You always inspire me with your wonderful ways with Erik. Sure you had to go into your room but how many would be able to do that before they did something not so nice. You are a wonderful mother!! I am so glad you got to end the evening with cuddle time. I hope you are doing well!! I am no longer working the school job so we have to plan a lunch date!!!!

10:25 PM  
Blogger Rosemarie said...

I get a lot of finger pointing and demands from my 3 1/2 year old, but luckily no tantrums. If it's any consolation….when she's in this mode she's acts like a 12 year old! I keep telling my husband we're in so much trouble.

10:05 PM  

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