I HATED GROCERY SHOPPING WITH THE KIDS until I learned one simple technique to ‘handle’ them with stress-free ease.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my kids. They’re the most important people in my life. But since I’ve been rocking this Mum thing alone I have felt overwhelmed, drained, and sometimes angry at my Husband for dying! (I know, what an insensitive git! Lol!)
You see, my 2 year old is a lovely independent free spirit but gosh, she can be so bloody challenging. To the point where she instantly drains all my energy, really pushes my patience, and makes me want to scream or cry.
My first, my son, was so easy to parent. He did as he was told, always listened and pretty much needed nothing more than cuddles and cups of tea from me. It was easy. Parenting was stress-free and I enjoyed every moment of it.
Now, take my 2nd, my daughter. She is the defiant queen of temper tantrums. Everything seems like a battle between us and whilst I am exceptionally patient with her, it only goes so far.
Take last week for an example … she sat on the floor outside a shop screaming for a cuddle. She’d been offered the demanded cuddle on numerous occasions and I had even tried to pick her up to give her it but she was having none of it. She squirmed, kicked and bum shuffled further away, screaming blue murder even louder. People were staring at us as they went in and out of the shop … mums with pitying expressions of ‘I understand that feeling’ and Dads laughing with relief because it wasn’t their kid acting up this time.
After 30 minutes of trying to coax her to me, I gave up trying to reason with her and resorted to what I knew would fix the whole situation in seconds … I asked her if she wanted ‘buboos’. She immediately shuffled over and triumphantly fell asleep on the boob.
I’d had enough.
Something needed to change before she completely tipped me over the edge.
The biggest problem, sadly (yet happily in equal measure) is that she is just like me.
We are both strong-willed and tend to only relent when we get our own way.
And whilst that’ll be great when she’s an adult, it’s not so appropriate in a 2 year old!
So, on the suggestion of many other mums, I turned to Supernanny.
I’d never watched it before but after 2 episodes I was armed with some new techniques to implement. I felt a surge in my confidence as an effective parent and start to put what I’d learned into action.
And gosh, the results from those simple actions really made my Sunday.
Every Sunday we go grocery shopping. It takes about an hour and that includes walking there and back. Usually Raven walks a little bit and then sits down on the floor and screams until I carry her the rest of the way, regardless of the shopping bags I was carrying or the fully-loaded trolley I was pulling. To her, I WAS an octopus and always had a hand to carry her with.
But this Sunday was different. I was ready to say no and for her to hear it AND respect it. Cue her walking melt down but instead of giving in, I pulled the SuperNanny trick out of my new bag of tricks … I came down to her level and explained what I wanted her to do and why it was important.
BOOM! It was like I had waved a magic wand!
She got up off the floor, grabbed my hand and happily walked all the way there and all the way back. NO drama. Not on the journey, nor in the supermarket. From either of them.
I was amazed.
And so freaking grateful … because this was the complete opposite to how it usually goes!
And you know what? I had ENJOYED the shopping trip with the kids for the first time ever!
It didn’t feel like an epic chore nor did it drain all my energy before lunchtime. I felt quite the reverse and for the first time since rocking the single parent role, the kids got to go to the park before lunch and have fun, and I didn’t feel like I needed a glass of wine!
And they felt good too because they were praised for their good behaviour … which reinforces to them that continuing to behave well would get them even more of it, thus increasing their self esteem and pride in themselves.
And all because I came down to their level and spoke to them like the adults they think they are.
To be honest, I am still a little unbelieving of it all! Did it really happen? Oh yes, it DID! WOW!
I know it’s still early days, and I still have more Supernanny tricks to learn, but from what I have seen so far this is going to be a beautiful and joyful journey for all of us.
I CAN be a SUPER single parent 🙂
So, tell me, who else has become a Supernanny student? What was the technique you found to have the greatest impact on the behaviour of your children, and consequently, on your happiness day-to-day? Share in the comments below.
PS. Did you know I run a group for (aspiring and totally-rocking-it-already) FULL POTENTIAL MAMA’s? ——-> http://www.gemmavenn.com/community