I may have looked an idiot, but he laughed himself silly
Tantrums. They're not much fun, are they?
And no, I’m not talking about my own when I’m forced to watch another episode of The Only Way Is Essex. How has that programme run for 20 series, by the way?
Before you have kids, tantrums tend to be something you witness on the odd occasion when you’re out and about, be it at a restaurant or in a shop.
You always hear them before you see them and watch on for a few seconds, smiling to yourself. You’re smug because you’re safe in the knowledge that you haven’t got to intervene in any way whatsoever.
You’re just relieved that it’s not your creation which is grabbing the attention of everyone within a half-mile radius.
You know the scene. You’ll be in town and see a parent struggling to regain control of a rapidly deteriorating situation in which their young child is kicking off. It’s usually over a relatively minor matter concerning sweets or toys.
The child’s adamant they should be allowed to do or have something and mum and dad share a slightly different opinion.
Well, of late, Louie has certainly mastered the tantrum art. While on the subject, how on earth do they learn that? My conclusion, thus far, is that it must be an innate skill because his are improving with every passing day. They’re now almost perfect. The screaming is spot on too.
And, for whatever reason, he demonstrates them more frequently and with better volume when mummy’s at work and I’m at home contending with him on my own.
Thankfully, they are largely confined to the house, although he has also had a few mini outbursts at the park and elsewhere.
My mum regularly takes delight in reminding me that I had similarly horrendous tantrums when I was Louie’s age. So, I guess this is karma.
Anyway, I’ve now learned to counteract these tantrums by copying the method used by the mother in that old Vicks commercial. In the advert, she rolls around on the floor of a supermarket to mimic her little boy’s anger and frustration.
So I tried it. I’m very pleased to say, it worked a treat. I looked an idiot, but he laughed himself silly. It’s definitely a tactic I’ll use again.
NOW I APPRECIATE WHAT HE MEANT
Things didn’t quite go according to plan when Louie and I combined a dog walk with a trip to the park the other day.
Sadly, it took us rather longer than expected to actually make it out of the house.
I’m really not exaggerating when I say it took me 10 minutes to get the little man’s shoes on.
If you’re expecting your first child at the moment, please brace yourself. This is what you have to come.
Don’t get me wrong, I love being a dad and I wouldn’t have it any other way. But 10 minutes?
No sooner had I put one shoe on, than he’d toddled off down the hallway, leaving me trailing in his wake.
Then, by the time I’d caught up with him to attach the other one, the original shoe had been kicked off and we were back to square one.
Comedian Michael McIntyre said: ‘Things you don’t even consider to be things become nearly impossible when you have children.’
I remember watching that for the first time before we had Louie. Only now do I fully appreciate just what he meant.