At Publix today, Helen threw a mega-tantrum… Not significant for most children, I’m sure, but Helen doesn’t really throw tantrums. But this was an all-out, growling/screaming/crying tantrum. All because I had given her a Care Bears book and she opened it and immediately tore something out of it. So I took it away from her.

It’s a peekaboo book, so there are little flaps on every page… She tore off the flap on the first page. Easy enough to fix with tape runner, but this book didn’t belong to her when she did it and that’s what I got mad at her about… So I snatched the book and told her she couldn’t have it back until Mommy paid for it AND fixed it. Thus began the tantrum, which lasted between 3-5 minutes.

[It’s Senior Citizen Day at Publix, so there were little old ladies staring down their noses at me, but what amused me is that it didn’t annoy me at all (for once)… One little old lady made a snide comment to me about Alice’s bare feet when we went in, but I just replied that Alice is a little hotbody and she’d take the socks off anyway.]

SO. Helen starts to have her tantrum, and I just kept going about my business, letting Helen do her screaming. And I made sure that I looked bored. Very very bored. As I was unloading my cart, I asked Helen, “So, how’s that working for you?” which of course made her shriek some more…. Apologized to the cashier and said, “She’ll quit in a minute, when she figures out she’s not getting anywhere.” And she did. Like someone flicked a switch. Helen noticed that Mommy was bored and other people were staring (including Alice, who was looking at her as if to say, “WTF is wrong with you?)… Helen doesn’t like other people to look at her. So she stopped. And then she started with the effluvious, “I’m sorry, Mommy. I’m sorry I was screaming. Can I have the book back?” It was pretty funny.

And no, I have not given her the book back. She is now havng lunch, and she will not get the book back until we are on the road tomorrow on the way to North Carolina. I’m such a wicked mommy.

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