Despre tantrum – uri
Momentul adevarului: tantrum-urile!
EN: The moment of truth: tantrums!
Ce legatura are titlul cu pozele? va intrebati probabil. Nicio legatura, in afara de faptul ca uneori parintii au nevoie de un moment de liniste. Asadar, zilele trecute, Radu si cu mine am intrat in Gradina Botanica, iar scurta noastra plimbare a fost relaxanta, chiar si asa, intrerupta de cateva poze. Chiar avem nevoie din cand in cand si de cate un moment in doi, in care sa discutam, fara sa fim intrerupti din 10 in 10 secunde de cate o intrebare de genul “Cine mi-a mancat avocado?” (fix asta e intrebarea pe care mi-a pus-o Vlad acum 10 secunde). Iar momentele de liniste sunt nepretuite mai ales dupa “furtuni”. Sau cum era de fapt? “Linistea dinaintea furtunii”?!? Aualeu, deci sa ma astept la o alta “furtuna” curand, ca prea a fost liniste in ultima vreme. Ei bine, inlocuiti acum “furtuni” cu “tantrumuri”, ca sa intelegeti exact la ce ma refer. Si daca nu stiti ce inseamna “tantrum”, nu e nicio tragedie. Nici eu nu stiam acum 3 ani. Am aflat mai multe despre aceste crize de furie cand Vlad avea 1 an si 10 luni, eram in aeroport in Noua Zeelanda si un alt baietel de vreo 2 ani si jumatate urla de zori in fata unei masinute, in care trebuie sa bagi fise ca sa legene copilul sau sa scoata sunete “haioase”. Mama, disperata, se scuza spunadu-mi: “You know, terrible twos”. Cum? Ce? De ce “terrible”? La ce sa ma astept? Si uite asa a inceput sa imi zica cum sta treaba cu tantrum-urile, adica aceste crize de furie, de nervi, in care copilul tau bland si zambitor pare ca a fost brusc schimbat, ca prin magie, de un vrajitor invizibil, cu un alt copil care ii seamana perfect, dar cu care nu te mai poti intelege sub nicio forma.
Asadar, la 2 ani copiii fac astfel de crize mai ales pentru ca inca nu pot vorbi, pentru ca nu se pot face intelesi, iar chestia asta ii frustreaza ingrozitor. Si am doua astfel de amintiri. O criza pe drumul de la Sibiu spre Bucuresti, in masina, cand Vlad ne cerea “Ia”! “Iaaaaaa”! “Iiiiiaaaaaa”!!!” cu muci, cu urlete, de parca “ia” aia avea sa ii salveze viata. Ne apucase o panica pe amandoi ca nu stiam ce e “ia” aia, ca sa putem sfarsi chinul copilului. “Painea?” – “Nuuuuuuuu!!!”, aualeu… “Hartia?” – “Nuuuuuu!!!” – Doamne, era ingrozitor, nu stiam cum sa o scoatem la capat. Intr-un final ne-am dat seama ca e vorba de “palaria” lui de paie, iar criza s-a incheiat cu un somn profund.
Iar a doua criza de nervi, pe care o tin minte in detaliu, a fost horror. Eram in AFI. Ii promisesem ca il duc la locul de joaca. Doar ca pana sa ajungem acolo, s-a oprit mai intai la Lego – de unde abia l-am mai scos. Apoi a fugit si a intrat in urmatorul magazin de jucarii (Noriel parca?!) – de unde nu am mai reusit sa il scot decat cu o jucarie cumparata. Satisfacut, a iesit din magazin si a fugit inspre masinute – alea care merg cu fise, despre care va vorbisem mai sus, caci ajunsesem exact la etapa copilului din aeroport. Mai intai in elicopter, apoi in tren, apoi in masina cu pisica……Fugea dintr-o parte in alta, eu dupa el, de teama sa nu-l pierd, avand senzatia ca lumea e toata a lui si ca noi, restul, trebuie sa ne adaptam cumva situatiei. Planul initial fusese sa mergem la locul de joaca, dar deja facusem nenumarate abateri. Cand in sfarsit l-am descaltat si a pasit in spatiul de joaca m-am simtit usurata. Situatia era din nou sub control. Pentru o ora. Ai fi zis ca alergatura, cataratul, aruncatul de bile, saritul la trambulina si tot ce mai e pe acolo – ca nu exista coltisor pe care sa-l lase nemarcat – o sa-l dovedeasca. Ei bine, nu. Promitandu-i ca mergem acasa sa ne jucam cu ce cumparasem de la magazin inainte, l-am convins – cat de cat – sa iasa din spatiul de joaca. Doar ca fix la iesire le-a vazut: acadele cu Fulger. Combinatia fatala. Si ACADELE si FULGER!!!! “Veaaaauuu”, “Veaaaaauuuu”. “NU SE POATE”, i-am raspuns ferm, explicandu-i ca deja i-am facut o multime de pofte, ca tocmai ce i-am cumparat o jucarie, ca tocmai ce s-a dat in 10 masinute si tocmai ce a iesit dintr-un loc de joaca. Nu aveam insa timp de prea multe explicatii, caci el incepuse sa se zbata in bratele mele. Avea niste miscari noi, pe care nu le mai facuse pana atunci. Niste contorsionari si niste invarteli care imi complicau enorm situatia. Aveam o gentuta cu hainele lui, o geanta a mea, cutia de joc uriasa proaspat cumparata, plus cardul cu care trebuia sa platesc o sticla de apa. L-am lasat pentru o secunda jos din brate, cat sa introduc pinul si … a fugit de langa mine. Nervos la maxim, a inceput sa tipe in mijlocul mall-ului, in zona de mancare, ca el vrea acadeuaaaaa cu Fulgeeeeer! M-am panicat. Nu se mai intamplase. Imi reveneau in minte vorbele lui tata care se lauda tot timpul ca niciunul dintre noi, cei trei frati, nu ne-am tavalit pe jos sa cerem o jucarie, nu am dat din picioare sau alte crize de genul. Oh, Doamne! Gresisem deja. Primul rateu de parinte. L-am prins din fuga lui prin multime, moment in care el, ca sa nu il iau in brate, s-a intins pe jos. S-a intins cu totul pe spate, fix in mijlocul mall-ului. Ce mai, tabloul era complet. Sublim. Eram rosie la fata si gafaiam. El incepuse sa rada. Radea de mine cred. Am inceput sa il gadil ca sa il relaxez si mai mult, dar si ca sa ii distrag atentia de la acadeaua aia blestemata. Plus ca in pozitia in care eram – el intins pe jos, eu deasupra lui – mi se parea ca gadilatul in sine poate sa fie o scuza buna in fata oamenilor de la mese, care se oprisera din mancat hamburgerii si care se uitau la noi dispretuitor: “Aaaa..nuuu…nu e ce pare…noi doar ne jucam…”. Un tip mai tanar de la o masa de langa noi – probabil trecut prin astfel de experiente – a incercat sa ii distraga atentia lui Vlad si sa il scoata din tantrum cu un “Hey. Ce faci? Cum te cheama?”. A reusit, in schimb, sa imi distraga mie atentia mie, moment in care copilul a fugit de langa mine si s-a intors la acadeaua lui. Ce am facut eu? I-am cumparat acadeaua. Da. Al doilea rateu. Dati cu pietre. Nu am stiut ce sa fac. Era prima lui criza de nervi de acest gen si nu aveam alte solutii pregatite la indemana. Voiam doar sa depasim repede momentul, cat mai repede. Asa ca, recunosc, am cedat.
In fine, “the terrible twos” au trecut si pot spune ca nu au fost atat de “terrible” pe cat ma speriasera altii. Tocmai cand ma bucuram in sinea mea ca am depasit etapa, ca uite ca Vlad vorbeste perfect, ca intelege tot si ca vom putea comunica excelent pe viitor, a implinit 3 ani si a venit ..THE tantrum. THE BIG ONE. Intr-o dimineata. Complet neasteptat. Aparent fara nicio explicatie. O dimineata in care NIMIC nu-i convenea. Laptele nu era suficient in cana, trebuia pana sus sus, nu era cald, apoi era prea cald, nu era in cana lui preferata, dar niciuna nu era cana lui preferata in dimineata aia, fructele aveau pielite, masa era prea sus, scaunul prea jos, TOTUL era un dezastru. Iar nemultumirile erau urlate, nu vorbite, ceea ce le facea si mai greu de inteles de catre Radu si cu mine, care simteam ca o putem lua razna mai rau decat copilul, daca acel tantrum nu avea sa se opreasca curand. L-am luat in brate, ca atunci cand era bebelus si am inceput sa il plimb, sa il legan, sa il mangai, sa il imbratisez. Fara vorbe. Mi-am dat seama ca dialogul nu era constructiv si ca oricat de mult as fi vrut sa ii explic ca facem tot ce putem, ca incercam sa il intelegem, tot nu reuseam. In astfel de situatii e mai simplu sa te uiti in ochii lui si sa taci. Sa vorbesti cu el dupa ce ii trece supararea, dupa ce spiritele se calmeaza.
Nu intelegeam ce mai e cu asa numitele “tantrum-uri” la varsta de 3 ani. Pai stai putin, nu era vorba de varsta de 2 ani? Cand copilul nu poate vorbi? Cica nu. Am cautat pe net si cica sunt la 3 ani. Pe bune?!?! Iar pana intr-un an oricum poate plange din nenumarate motive. Deci, recapitulam: copilul are crize de plans pana intr-un an (ca are colici, ca vrea ceva ce tu nu stii ca vrea…), face crize la varsta de 2 ani (ca e frustrat ca nu poate vorbi inca, ca nu se poate face inteles), dar face si la 3 ani (ca asta e varsta tantrum-urilor). Deci, spuneti, la 4 ani ce urmeaza? La 5? La 6?
Revenind la crizele lui Vlad, avantajul e ca sunt rare. Poate ca sunt copii care nu au deloc, habar nu am, ori se manifesta diferit. Iar alti copii care au mai multe si mai rele. Ale lui au fost doar cateva, pe care mi le aduc BINE aminte. Si le recunosc. Sigur lui ii e foarte greu in acele momente, sigur motivele lui sunt mai puternice decat cele care se vad la suprafata, sigur sunt mai multe cauze, si in mod sigur trebuie ca parinte – oricat de greu e pe moment – sa incerci sa ramai calm. Inca invatam sa le gestionam. Si da, nu sunt parintele ideal, al carui copil ideal nu se va fi tavalit niciodata in mijlocul mall-ului sau al parcului. Nu stiu daca e un rateu. Cred mai degraba ca am un copil cu un temperament puternic, extrem de independent, pe care in mod sigur nu l-am educat fiindu-i frica de mine.
Si pentru ca ma astept sa mai apara astfel de episoade, va intreb si pe voi: cum treceti peste tantrum-uri? Oare noi am fost generatia aia de aur care nu facea nicioadata crize? Au uitat parintii nostri de tantrum-urile noastre, care pe vremea lor sigur nu se chemau asa? Sau ne era prea frica sa ne miscam in front? Sau cum altfel?
In poze port: rochie Ludmila Corlateanu, pantofi answer.ro. Iar tinuta in miscare…
EN: What does the title have to do with the photos? you’re probably wondering. Nothing at all, except for the fact that sometimes parents need a break. So, last days, Radu and I went into the Botanical Garden, and our short walk was relaxing, even though interrupted by a few pictures. Every now and then we need a moment just for the two of us, to talk, without being interrupted every 10 seconds by a question like “Who ate my avocado?” (it’s the exact same question Vlad asked me 10 seconds ago). And the quiet moments are priceless especially after “storms”. Or what was is like? “The calm before the storm”?!? Ouch, so I should be expecting another “storm” any time now, because it was pretty quiet lately. Well, now replace “storms” with “tantrums”, to understand exactly what I am talking about. And if you don’t know what “tantrums” are, that’s fine. 3 years ago I didn’t know either. I found out more about these when Vlad was 1 year and 10 months old, we were in the airport in New Zealand and another little boy about 2 years old was screaming in front of a car, which you are supposed to put quarters in to rock the child and make “funny” noises. The mother, desperate, was excusing herself by saying: “You know, terrible twos”. What? Why “terrible”? What should I expect? She then told me about tantrums, these fury manifestations, in which your gentle and smiling child seems to suddenly have been exchanged, like through magic, by an invisible wizard, with another child who looks exactly like him, but which you can’t get any sense into.
So, at 2 years old, children have such tantrums, especially because they can’t talk yet, they can’t make themselves understood, and this really frustrates them. And I have 2 such memories. One on the road from Sibiu to Bucharest, in the car, when Vlad was asking for “Ia”! “Iaaaaaa”! “Iiiiiaaaaaa”!!!” with buggers, screaming, like “ia” was going to save his life. We both panicked because we had no idea what “ia” was and how we could end his suffering. “Bread?”- “Noooooo!!!!”, “Paper?”- “Noooo!!!”- God, it was horrible, we didn’t know what to do. Finally we realized it was his straw hat, and the tantrum ended in a deep sleep.
And the second tantrum, which I remember in detail, was horror. We were in AFI. I had promised to take him to the playground. But on our way there, he stopped first at Lego – where I almost had to drag him out of. Then he ran off and went into the next toy store (Noriel, was it?!) – where I could only get him out of with a toy bought. Satisfied, he got out of the store and ran towards the little cars- the ones with quarters, which I mentioned above, because we were right at the stage of the kid in the airport. First in the helicopter, then in the train, then in the car with a cat… He was running around, I was running after him, afraid not to lose him, under the impression the world belongs to him and the rest of us have to somehow adapt to the situation. The initial plan was to go to the playground, but we already made many stops. When I finally took his shoes off and he walked into the play area, I felt relieved. The situation was under control again. For an hour. You would think that running around, climbing, throwing balls, jumping on the trampoline and everything else- because he didn’t leave any spot unexplored- would be enough to wear him out. Well, not really. Promising him that we would go home and play with what we had bought, I convinced him – to some extent- to get out of the playground. But on our way out he saw them: lollipops with Lightning. The fatal combo. LOLLIPOPS and LIGHTNING!!!! “I waaaaaant, “I waaaaant”. “YOU CAN’T”, I answered, explaining that we had already done many things, that we just bought a toy, that he just went on 10 cars and that he just went out of the playground. But I didn’t have much time for explanations, because he started fidgeting in my arms. He had some new moves, which I hadn’t seen before. Some twist and spins which were really making things complicated for me. I had a little bag with his clothes, a bag of mine, the gigantic toy box we just bought, plus the credit card with which I had to pay for a bottle of water. I put him down for one second, to type the pin code and… he ran away from me. Really angry, he started shouting in the middle of the mall, in the food court, that he wants the lollipop with Lightning! I freaked out. This never happened before. I had flashbacks of my father bragging about how neither of us 3 siblings rolled on the floor to ask for a toy, we never stamped our feet or anything of that sort. Oh, God! I had already made mistakes. My first screw up as a parent. I caught him in the middle of the crowd, and, to avoid me picking him up, he lay on the floor. He was flat on his back, right in the middle of the mall. It was the complete scene. Divine. I was all red in the face and gasping for air. He began to laugh. He was laughing at me I guess. I started tickeling him to relax him some more, but also to distract him from the bloody lollipop. Plus in the position we were in- him laying on his back, me on top of him- I thought that tickling might be a good excuse for the people sitting at the tables, who stopped eating their hamburgers to look down on us: “Aaaa..noooo…it’s not what it looks like…we’re just playing…”. A younger guy from a table next to us- probably experienced on the subject- tried to distract Vlad and to get him out from his tantrum with a “Hey. How are you? What’s your name?”. He managed to distract me, and in that moment the child ran away again and went back to his lollipop. What did I do? I bought him the lollipop. Yes. My second screw up. Throw rocks at me. I didn’t know what else to do. It was his first tantrum and I didn’t have any other solutions at hand. I just wanted to get pass this moment as soon as possible. So, I admit, I gave in.
Well, “the terrible twos” are now over and I can say they weren’t as “terrible” as others had scared me. Just when I was happy to be over this phase, because Vlad is talking perfectly, that he understands everything and that we’ll be able to communicate excellently in the future, he turned 3 and it came..THE tantrum. THE BIG ONE. One morning. Completely unexpected. Apparently without any explanation. A morning when NOTHING was right by him. There wasn’t enough milk in his mug, it had to be all the way up, it wasn’t warm, then it was too warm, it wasn’t in his favorite mug, but none of the mugs were his favorite that morning, the fruit had skins, the table was too high, the chair was too low, EVERYTHING was disaster. And the complaints were screamed, not spoken, which made them even harder to understand by Radu and me, who felt like we were losing it worse than the child, if that tantrum wasn’t going to stop soon. I picked him up, like when he was a baby, I rocked him, caressed him, hugged him. Without saying anything. I realized dialogue wasn’t constructive and that no matter how hard we tried to explain that we were doing our best, it wasn’t enough. In situations like this it is easier to look him in the eyes and be silent. Talk to him after it’s over, after the spirits have calmed down.
I didn’t understand why we were experiencing tantrums at 3 years. Wait a minute, weren’t they supposed to go away by now? I have searched on the internet and apparently they are at 3. Really?!?! And until he’s one he can cry for various reasons. So, let’s repeat: the child cries until he’s one (because of colic, wanting something you don’t know he wants…), he cries at 2 (because he’s frustrated he can’t speak yet, that he can’t make himself be understood), but he also cries at 3 (which is the age of tantrums). So, go ahead, what’s going at 4? What about at 5? At 6?
Coming back to Vlad’s tantrums, the advantage is they’re rare. Maybe there are some children who don’t have any, I have no idea, or they express themselves differently. And other kids have more and worse ones. His were just a few a remember really WELL. And I recognize them. I’m sure he has a very hard time in that moment, surely his reasons are stronger than what’s on the surface, surely there are many causes, and surely as a parent- no matter how hard it is- to try and remain calm. We’re still learning to manage them. And yes, I’m not the ideal parent, whose ideal child never rolled around on the floor of the mall or the park. I don’t know if it’s a screw up. I think it’s having a child with a strong temper, extremely independent, who I have certainly not educated to fear me.
And since I expect more of these episodes to come up, I’m asking you: how do you manage tantrums? Were we the golden generation who never had tantrums? Have our parents forgotten about our tantrums, which we were definitely not called like that in those days? Or were we too afraid to say something? Or what else?
In the pictures I am wearing: Ludmila Corlateanu dress, shoes from answer.ro. And above the outfit on the move.