It was 2 summers ago and I was at the Bi-mart, hugely pregnant with baby girl #2 and a little 2 year old in tow. I found a patio umbrella for 40% off and had been looking for just that! I hefted it onto my cart, balanced precariously. I was there for other things, so my cart was full of this and that.
And then Emma found a big display of bouncy balls and wouldn't leave them behind. As time ticked on, I knew I would be forced to draw her away. Emma was plagued with tantrums, horrible awful tantrums for nearly a year and I knew what was to come. Oh, it was a doozy. She screamed and threw herself down in the middle of the isle. There was nothing inconspicuous about this fit and people stared. The time dragged on and on and her screaming did not lessen. I've never wanted to buy a stupid $2 ball more in my life. I just wanted to silence the child. I ended up throwing her kicking and screaming body under my arm, without the bouncy ball, and pushed the cart, jumbled and balanced to the counter. I was quickly helped and I left the store with my cumbersome burdens in tow.
Training Emma through those years was such a challenge. There was scarcely a day that didn't end with both of us in tears and I felt like such a failure. I thought of that time today when I was at Bi-Mart and Emma spotted a set of 4 water guns on the sale rack. She asked if she could buy them -- they would be perfect for her and her cousins she persuaded. I looked for a price, but couldn't find one. I told Emma we would ask the cashier how much they were, but we would not buy them unless they were a good deal. I said I wouldn't pay more than $3 for them. She carried them around the store and then handed them to the cashier asking her, "How much are these?" They rang up for $7.95, clearly not on sale. And Emma said with a resigned sigh, "I guess they aren't a good deal." She quietly let them go, although I could tell she was very disappointed.
I was so proud! I was proud of Emma's maturity and I was proud of a mama who didn't give up on her conviction to train a child in the way she should go. Many of life's biggest lessons are learned when we can't see beyond the turmoil.
Later this morning, the girls and I drove by a garage sale with a lawn full of children's things. We stopped to see if there was anything we "needed." The seller had 2 girls older than Emma and we found many things for just the deal we were looking for.
One pair of white Keds with pretty jewels that jingle and fit Emma right now....