And then I had a child.
I remember vividly the tantrum Coco threw in Trader Joe’s about 3 months ago. I don’t know what set her off because she was fine moments before we entered the store. By that time I knew not to take a tired or hungry child shopping. I learned that lesson the hard way when I took her to Safeway after picking her up from daycare one evening. She was tired and hungry but we had nothing to eat so I figured I would stop off on the way home. Big mistake. Huge.
Oh, and let’s not forget the one she had in CVS. Her piercing screams got me all kinds of evil looks. She had only been home with me for about a month when that one happened and I remember thinking to myself, ‘Give me a break people! I have only been parenting her a month. This wouldn’t be happening if I had had her since birth’. Yeah, right! Who did I think I was?
Coco’s been home with me now for about a year and a half. We have rules and there are consequences for behavior. She knows this. But she’s three. She gets whiny and cranky and acts up when she’s hungry and tired. So I do what I swore I would never do. I bribe her. Yup, sure do. And, yes, it goes totally against every parenting philosophy I believe in. But you know what? Sometimes it’s just freaking easier that way! “So”, I tell her, “if you are a good girl in the store I will buy you a cookie”. Ugh. I cringe when I say it, but when you need to shop with a tired or hungry child, it sure makes the experience easier. On everyone.