Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Dreaded Phase

Someone asked me not too long ago if Ticia has already stepped into the Terrible Two phase since she is... urm... two.

No, I said confidently.

Yes, she had been putting up tantrums and all that but I somehow felt they weren't that phase yet. I felt she was manageable. Easy peasy konon.

Well, until she got sick recently (and the daddy suspected she had growth spurt), she has since been terribly difficult to predict. One minute she was all angelic looking, flashing smile that melts the heart you just want to hug and kiss her all the time. Then all of sudden, a simple "Ticia, please wait" when she wanted something while my hands were occupied sent her lying on the floor, screaming crazily her voice so sharp it could break my ear-drum. Even a simple decline to being carried will make her furious. Lucky this only happens at home so far.

It has gotten too frequent in a day that this time I am so sure Terrible Twos has FINALLY making a show. Late by three months but yeah, here. However, deep down I know this phase does not acquired its name cos simply.

"There must be reasons to all this happenings. Reasons why she was unhappy,"

I sound like I am in denial of having a toddler who is acting exactly like how her age should be. But, if I know what gets her upset and frustrated, I can avoid all this drama, right?

Truth is, I just want to be able to tackle and handle this phase better. Whenever she throws an unexplainable fit, I try to avoid lying hands on her. But when she kept wailing, unwilling to give in, I find myself either spanking her leg or arm. And then ended up regretting my doing.
At other times, when I have no energy to entertain her unpredictable storm, I would just let her be. Ignore her wails and act like I didn't hear a thing. But, that sent me feeling guilty as well. What lesson did I give her by ignoring her tantrum?

What did I do?
Menggoogle lah ini ibu.

Ok, firstly, I must admit that this phase is normal. No, of course I know it's normal and I know it's inevitable but I MUST ACCEPT that even if I know what to expect and what to do, at times, things will get worst that I can't expect myself to be in control ALL THE TIME. I must learn that I will be defeated sometimes. That's how it will go. And that is how I will rise back and learn from it. Sehmen! So dramatic lah kau Carol.

'The less invested and upset you get, the quicker the storm will pass' - Anne Davies

That's what I am currently doing.
Every time my little princess warrior tries to show her frustration in the form of wailing, throwing herself on the floor, throwing things or hitting I try not to participate in what she is doing. Oh, this is definitely NOT EASY. It is not easy to not get angry when your child screams her lung out, eyes staring daringly at you telling that she was upset. But I try. And like I mentioned, it's not always my game. I don't always win. I don't always manage to control my anger. Terlepas juga tangan mentapap kaki si Ticia yang sudah sedia banyak gandas.

In spite of all that above, trying to be calm, rational and not to take her tantrums personally do help me slowly in tackling her melt down. It does feel victorious if I get to distract her from being upset when I cannot let her play with the water pipe for half an hour.
"Come, we mandi in the bathroom. You can play water in the tub."

Or when I manage to avoid drama by limiting choices.
"When the bubbles all gone that means you must get up already."

Or when my calm but repeatedly stern 'No' finally gets to her without intimidating her.
Or simply ignoring her which eventually led her to coming back to me when she was much calmer.

It has only been roughly two weeks since I try being 'less invested' but I am already feeling less tortured by her drama. She still throw herself on the floor. Still screaming. Still trying to hit and throw stuffs. But key word here, LESSER.

And most important, I feel much happy dealing with my daughter's tantrums. Ha!
Jangan Carol...itu baru bunga-bunga. Bak kata my sister in-law, this is the phase where you practically don't have a manual. One thing might work today. But may not the next day.

Well until I cross that new level of bridge, let's just enjoy what I have gain today lah orang bilang kan.


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