Yesterday my daughter became a raging hot mess. She oscillated between demanding, angry and shattered crying on the floor with such alarming speed I couldn’t keep up. Maybe not so unusual for a three year old but the reason it started really got me thinking. My mum and I had taken her to a Japanese restaurant for lunch. Mum snuck off and came back with two perfect individually wrapped pom-pom chrysanthemums, one each for myself and mini-me.
As they were handed over, the nightmare began.
‘I hate pink! I don’t want that one. Go and get me the rainbow flowers. I want the rainbow flowers.’
‘You can’t have the rainbow flowers honey, granny chose these beautiful ones for us.’
Aaaand onto the floor she crumpled. Screaming, sobbing, pleading. Then back up to repeat ‘rainbow flower’ for ten minutes, back to the floor etc. You get the picture, it wasn’t pretty.
As I sat there silently willing her to stop being such a cow, I realised she expects to get every single thing she looks at sideways. Now I know I’ve helped to create this but seeing someone you love so much so happy for the sake of a toy here or a book there is hard to resist. I know its time to start saying ‘No’ though, for my sake and hers. While I’ve been pretty regimented in not buying anything I don’t either really need or absolutely love and plan to keep ’til I’m old and grey, the little one’s stuff has started to suffocate us. So its time to publicly affirm my commitment to no spending on non-essentials with a few exceptions:
No-spend Autumn things I can buy
- Winter boots – because my old ones have finally fallen apart (although this is their ninth winter so a pretty good run!)
- A birthday present for the little person
Of course food, fuel, parking and experiences are exempt too.
I’ve done this before and pretty well stuck to it but its time to redefine the rules now that the threenager has foud her voice (and purchasing power). Wish us luck – there are only so many tantrums anyone can face haha!