Tania made me think of this when she told us about Mignon’s tantrum. Just read it now as I had a funny tummy yesterday.
We were living in Jhb and I was 5 and my sis was a few months. Dad used to get paid every fortnight and us gals would go blow his money at the OK in/near Carlton Centre and after shopping we’d go up to the look-out point with a treat.
Anyhoo, Mom had a basket in her one hand, sis in papoose and me holding onto other hand. I saw biscuits I wanted and because it was not a payday week, Mom said no I had to wait until the next week.
WELL – I threw myself down and did a pretty spectacularly frenzied synchronised swim sans water, flat on my back. Mom was having none of it. Walked to the front of the store, left her basket with security and told security that the screaming brat is hers. Please to help her keep an eye on said brat and she went to hide behind something at the entrance. I eventually realised that I was without my desired audience (very important if you’re tantrumming – other people are no fun, it has to be your parents/caregivers) and started looking for her. Went up and down the aisle and realised she was GONE. I did as I was taught and went to security and asked them to call my Mommy over the intercom because I lost her. Security lady was in on it and told me my Mommy left because I was being naughty and she said my Daddy will fetch me after work. I must wait with the lady. OMW – I cried that day like I had never cried before. I was inconsolable. Mom came out after about a minute of my crying but it felt like a lifetime. I was very grateful to see her and my sister and apparently was the sweetest sweet for months after that.
1) I was a master tantrum thrower and Mom had just had it by then and she was pretty good with nipping things in the bud early on. Also I was being extremely ugly to my baby sister (another post for another day) and I think Mom just felt she needed to ‘reset’ me.
2) It was the early, safe-ish’80s and I was never out of Mom’s sight – she was watching me all along (she was way too paranoid about safety not to).