Disclosure: A version of this piece previously posted on TheFabMom.com.
How do you get through the extra-difficult toddler days of whining over wanting both dollies, crying because I didn’t provide enough crackers in the bowl and completely losing all shreds of human rationality over not being able to slam the bedroom door shut just to be funny. My girls are really testing limits lately… and it’s trying my patience. Not fabulous. I love them, but a mom can only have so much tolerance.
Let me get the obligatory “I love them soooooooo much” outta the way (because I truly do, as we all do our own), but I needed to tackle their new wicked personalities head on. I yelled. They yelled. I whispered. They yelled. I even started this ‘be good and we’ll put something in the jar’ game to fill up for a ‘surprise’ (which kinda is working a bit).
All three of us women were officially frustrated. Then I thought. I thought and I thought.
What works for me when I get whiny, frustrated and find myself in a rut? A date. My husband’s biggest problem in life is that I want to go out on fun dates with him. Dates refresh relationships and remind us why we love the other person so much.
My toddler girls and I needed a DATE.
So I planned a fast and furious one. We flitted our way to Hollywood to catch a special Tinkerbell movie on it’s last day (“The Pirate Fairy” was at the El Capitan). The outing had all the elements of a perfect date: 1) A fabulous location (Hollywood), 2) Glamorous outfits (I dressed my girls as fairies with tutus and glitter, minus the wings), 3) Dancing (a pre-show toddler dance party in the theater), 4) Food & drinks (popcorn! apple juice!).
We talked, we laughed, we danced, we held hands. I even got a few sweet kisses. (Too much? Ha. Had to keep up with my own ‘dating’ theme here.)
The most important wake up call for me: My girls behaved the whole time… without any conflict at all. On the way to the theater, inside the theater, when we got home… you should’ve seen them pay attention and say please and thank you clap their hands. They listened. They waited. They cooperated. They sat still (I guess I’d sit still too if someone gave me a tub of popcorn the size of my head to inhale… please don’t tell Dr. Greene).
Where were the rebellious brats that invaded my house the week before? G-O-N-E. Nowhere to be found.
My girls snapped back to being content and “normal” (notice I use quotation marks). Two days later (as of this writing), they still are. I guess I’m not the only woman in this house who needs fun dates.
Do you date your kids?