I don’t know if it’s the return to school that has tired Amber out, but both the Lovely Melanie and I have had to bite our tongues with her this week.
She’s had two monster bennies (our term for a tantrum) for absolutely no reason.
Our fridge is on the blink at the moment, and everything is far too cold – sometimes even icy – so when Amber’s Weetabix looked like an ice cream sundae I put it in the microwave for about 20 seconds.
Perfect! It came out room temperature, sans ice cream.
And your majesty had a gigantic benny because it was warmer than she liked it.
As is my parenting style, I refused to budge when she asked for a bowl of Cheerios instead: “Not until you’ve eaten your Weetabix.”
Cue, a fit of wailing and whining that wouldn’t have seemed out of place on the stage. Of course, that had no effect so she went upstairs to complain to the Lovely Melanie.
After about five minutes of more distant wailing and whining I heard the raised tones of my darling wife telling her daughter in no uncertain terms to get back downstairs, eat the Weetabix and shut up.
Which was unusual because the Lovely Melanie almost never shouts at either child.
That evening the same thing happened again, when Amber wanted to know something about holidays.
To this day no one has the faintest clue what she was asking about, but it went something like this…
AMBER: Mummy, when are the holidays?
LOVELY MELANIE: Which one, poppet?
AMBER: Our holiday. When is it?
LOVELY MELANIE: Our family holiday? It’s in August.
AMBER: No, the holiday. How long is it?
LOVELY MELANIE: We’re going for seven days.
AMBER: No, I mean how long is it?
LOVELY MELANIE: I just told you – seven days. A week.
AMBER: No! When is it going to be?!
LOVELY MELANIE: (now a bit mystified) In August. In the school holidays.
AMBER: (getting cross) No, when is it going to be the holiday?
LOVELY MELANIE: I don’t understand, love. Our family holiday is in August for one week.
AMBER: No!! You’re not listening! When is the holiday going to be for?!
I was reading nearby and by now fully understood that we were going away during the school summer holidays in August for one week (or seven days, if you like) but this, apparently, was not the answer Amber sought.
Millie strolled past at one point, curious as to why her sister was having a meltdown.
MILLIE: What’s wrong with Amber?
ME: No one knows.
MILLIE: Oh. OK.
Amber never did figure out how to make her question (whatever it was) understood, and after about five minutes was reducing to simply screaming for an answer.
In the end she wore herself out and we put her to bed.