4.18.2012

The run running moms may never talk about

I am not the only running mom out there and I am not the only running mom that blogs about her runs. I love to read about other running moms getting it done and their tips for success. But truth be told, some days are really rotten as a running mom. And instead of blogging about just the runs that go well, I feel I need to tell you about the ones that try my patience.

Yesterday was field trip day for darling daughter and I was a chaperone. We talked about our plan prior and the idea was that she would leave with me instead of riding the bus back to school for me to just go there to pick her up. All that would happen when they got back was nap time and if she doesn't go to school, she doesn't nap, and goes to bed better. It seemed like a win-win situation to hang out together post-field trip. Especially since we were lunching at the park we love to run around! I envisioned a beautiful run with her after her playing and eating and then we would head home. I even reconfirmed that this was indeed what she wanted to do. So we said good bye to the teachers and headed off.

Source
Thing is, my darling daughter is in a phase of uncertainty. Many tears have been shed. Many screams screamed. And many times this running mom has prayed for patience to endure and told darling daughter that I am not playing that game anymore. Fortunately this doesn't happen daily but when it does it goes like I want this, I want that, I want this, I want that, I want this....there is no happy ending. So when we got to the car and got her in the stroller and she announced she wanted to ride the bus my first thought was "oh no, here we go". The idea of running solo was equally enticing but I knew if I took her back to the group she would say "no, I want to go with you" plus I know from experience that it is really difficult to manage a field trip with kids coming and going. The last thing I want is a kid to be left behind due to confusion on how many kids are still with the group. So I held my ground and no, she won't be going back to the group. We are running.

I headed off running with her screaming and pondered how long it would take for her to run out of steam. Usually her tantrums are strong and short. Sometimes she gets so worked up she doesn't seem to know how to stop...no matter what I do. This ended up being one of those. I tried every trick in the book. Picking flowers and grass for her to throw at me or whatever. Promising a reward for quieting down. Ignoring her....essentially a time out when I really can't go anywhere else. Distractions with barracuda sightings and seeing a person dressed up as the Statue of Liberty. I would get brief reprieves but it would all just start up again. Man, that girl is determined! Kinda like me. 

I ended up running 2.58 miles and wavered between feeling strong and feeling like the worst mom ever. I got her situated in the car, still crying and screaming, and began the 40-minute drive home determined to find my happy place. She continued her protests over halfway home until she finally zonked out and I finally found blissful peace. My running mantras served me well and I kept repeating to myself I am strong, I can run on, and I choose to be happy. I am getting better at keeping my cool during her mega-tantrums, which fortunately may happen only once a month, but still question if there is something more I could be doing to help her through it all. But hey, if you are going to scream your lungs out roadside may be the perfect place. So to all the moms out there....what would you do? What is your advice? Any tricks I am forgetting to use?

When we got home all was better and we had some water play and relaxation time. And we both needed that. And at bedtime when we were snuggled close we discussed this incident and what we can do in the future. I turned it into a learning lesson about why we need to make up our minds, especially at really important times. I had to reiterate that it is okay to change you mind every now and then. I think she got it and I implemented an ask mommy trick. She can ask me if this is a game time or serious time when making a decision to help her know when there is no second chance.

Today's run was much quieter. I ran 5.0 miles with 3.15 miles at tempo pace.

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for the opportunity to write a guest post for FitFluential....yep, two guest posts in one week!
Daily Affirmation: I am a good mom.

19 comments:

  1. I'm about to be a mom and I have REALLY been blessed by all you running mom bloggers! So much insight and encouragement has been shared, and I have been so glad to have it! Thanks for posting even the less pleasant moments so new running moms like me can be somewhat...prepared...if possible. :)

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    1. Thanks Jane! There is a wonderful community of runners and moms online and I think they have one great thing in common --- they are willing to talk and share stories and support one another. Okay, that is two great things!

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  2. I don't have advice about the mega tantrums, my 7 and 5 year old both go through the fits where the CAN'T calm down. I try all the tricks - talking, time out, hugging, ignoring it and I've even resorted to yelling at times. Nothing seems to help. I'm sorry your daughter is dealing with this craziness, I hope that talking about it helped her feel more in control. Great running through it though!

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    1. Thank you so much for your comment. Sometimes just hearing I am really not alone is enough help!

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  3. You are definitely not alone. Luckily my boys are 10 and 12 now, so I haven't gone through this in a while, but when you are in it, it's very frustrating. Way to get your runs in through it all:)

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  4. Gosh it sure is hard...doing this alone half the time because my husband is away with the Army, I empathize....deep breaths!! That's what I tell myself!!! xoxo!

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    1. You are a trooper! My dear hubby and my schedule have us so we barely have time off to maximize our time with darling daughter and her care. I don't know how you do it!

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  5. I don't have any advice for the tantrums, I have tried everything with my 9 year old, and still haven't found a solution. Glad you got some what of a run in at least.

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  6. Tantrums are hard for everyone. Crap, I even still have them. But I think you did the right thing.

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  7. I'm in the midst of tantrums right now, I have a 1 and a 2 year old. I always end up feeling like I don't know how to handle it and like I am doing the wrong thing etc. I am trying more and more to pour my frustrations in my runs so that I feel better and am a better mom afterwards. So no, I don't have any advice, but boy it feels good to know that other running moms face the same challenges as me.

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  8. Wow, that sounds familiar. My two are 4 and almost 7, and I don't run with them anymore ... thankfully. I would love to, but in the double jogger, they are too hard to push - even singly! My last attempt was last year. Now I work around all our schedules to get exercise in.

    In any case, I remember the few times we had the running fits. It wasn't often, but it did happen. Mostly, I tried to ignore them. It was hard, though, and I remember that feeling of being a terrible mom.

    I don't know if I have any tips for you that you haven't already thought of yourself. Basically, I had some stroller toys that ONLY came out in the stroller. What was particularly beloved were the musical books. You know, the Dora and other character books that have four or so buttons along the side and played songs for each page. Both kids LOVED those and would play those for quite a while. Also, I almost NEVER left home without snacks and drinks in the stroller. In fact, some snacks were of the variety that also never came out at the house - like Goldfish.

    I guess that's what I remember getting us through most. It sounds like you handled it beautifully. We're also going through a similar phase with my sone, and it is challenging.

    :)

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    1. Great idea with the special books! My darling loves to "read" and Dora is her favorite. She has had her eyes on that musical Dora book and I think this is the perfect reason and time for it!

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  9. I don't know if this is an option for you but I run at 5am, before anyone is awake. It stinks getting up early, but the only person who will ruin my run is me. And that's only if I don't want to get out of bed.

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    1. Aloha Leonor, running early is a great thing! The vast majority of my runs are at the wee hours in the morning, at home on the treadmill, or weekly at the gym with darling daughter in the kids' club. However, every now and then I do try to put the jogging stroller to use and most days, it is all a-okay!

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  10. Ugh! This would happen to me once I'd already be out a few miles from the car and then my child would decide to start screeching. Then I'd have to race back to where I parked and/or carry him in one hand and push the stroller with the other - 'course I only took my kids out in the jogger up until they were about one year old, and not too heavy :)

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  11. I'm glad that SOMEONE finally posted about a not successful stroller run. My 15 mo old son will NOT sit in a stroller for more than 10 min...the only way I can get him to go on a semi-decent run with me is to time it with his nap time! And hope that I've hit that golden window - if he's not tired or over-tired, then I am in for exactly what you described =)
    Thank you for the honest and candid post =)

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    1. You are very welcome. I am so glad that posted the not-so-fun runs as a mom was beneficial to you. Life isn't all rosy but hang in there....it will get better!

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  12. I am so glad you posted this. My almost 4-year-old's tantrums drive us nearly to insanity and I sometimes wonder if there is more I could be doing and if other parents go through this. I'm glad to know we're not alone! I think the new baby has set him back a bit in overcoming these tantrums, too. I've never taken him on a run before. Maybe it would help?

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