This is a picture of SuperBoy last Monday in Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort.
No, he didn’t fall and hurt himself.
Amidst screaming, ranting and yelling while I directed him to a less people laden location, SuperBoy threw himself on the ground in one grand finale meltdown.
I struggled with posting this picture, which I snapped to show him in our post-meltdown breakdown. I don’t ever want to embarrass my child, but a picture is worth a thousand words, right?
Tired, hot and dealing with a dad who was also tired and hot…. I had been waiting for this meltdown to occur. I was prepared. I had a plan of action. I knew I would carry out our normal melt down protocol right there in the middle of Disney …. so that SuperBoy would continue to learn how to bring himself out of these situations…and so that he would know that even in the most magical of places…. I will not tolerate that behavior.
It was harder than I thought.
I felt sorry for him. The kids really had been holding up amazingly well. This was day SIX …and the first sign of major meltdown. I thought we would see it by day TWO. This was not a melt down brought on by selfish desires, it was pure over stimulation on ten different levels.
I was embarrassed. Horrified, actually. Part of his melt down routine is to yell and scream about how I’m hurting him when I place my hand on his arm to remove him from a situation. He stayed true to form and screamed and yelled, loudly, in Hollywood Studios, that I was hurting him and to “Please just LET. ME. GO!”
The most awful part of this whole situation?
The judgmental looks and scoffs I got from the parents around me. Parents who apparently have angels for children, or are only on day ONE of their trip. When I removed SuperBoy from the Muppet 3-D attraction I took him to what was the most remote area I could find in the immediate vicinity. One mother sitting across the street from us (reading a book while her baby apparently slept in the stroller) shot me a dirty look, huffed and puffed and then moved up the street and complained to the strangers around her about “some parents”.
The older couple that had been sitting next to her did not move, watching us without even pretending to look away, shook their heads and whispered to each other.
When I see other parents suffering the trials of a child melting down I either give them the silent, knowing and supportive nod … or I inwardly smile and breathe a sigh of relief because it was them….and not me. Most of the time I do both.
Part of my strategy for addressing these melt downs is to simply be in his space, but to be silent. I let him scream and yell and fuss….until he can pull himself together. We’ve tried talking, we’ve tried rationalizing. He’s old enough to know those words by heart … he needs to be able to soothe himself. When he is ready I will hold, rock, hug and kiss the daylights out of him …but not until he has calmed himself down.
As I sat on the curb waiting for him to pull it together a mom walked up and looked at me with disdain (I really don’t think I’m exaggerating)…then went to SuperBoy and asked him if everything was okay…if he needed help. (?!) He looked at her, very confused, then continued on his tirade. I looked her squarely in the face and said “He is over stimulated, overly tired and having a temper tantrum. He’s six, he’ll get over it.”
I half expected someone to call the authorities on me.
After half an hour (yes, half an hour) SuperBoy pulled himself together. We went on with our day and enjoyed the rest of Hollywood Studios.
During his meltdown I was encouraged greatly by the support I received on Twitter from my fellow Disney Social Media Moms parents…. reminding me that Disney World is the meltdown capital of the world (for kids AND grownups!). It also served to remind me, yet again what a great group of people I had the opportunity to meet and spend time with during this phenomenal event.
The SuperFamily is embarking on our first life-sized family vacation in just a few short weeks! In true “I’m a blogger, it’s part of my life” style…. it will be a hybrid family vaca and social media extravaganza.
For the third year in a row, Walt Disney World, in conjunction with Resourceful Mommy Media, Mom Bloggers Club, Mom Select and 5 Minutes for Mom is hosting the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL. This awesome combination of Disney Magic, Social Media Bliss and Family Adventure is happening April 26 – 29 and this year, attendance is by invitation only. You can imagine how excited I was when those first invitations went out on January 25 and I found one in my email.
How amazing is it that I get to be a part of this conglomeration of cool?!
I am waiting anxiously to hear what the conference has in store for us this year….past years have seen speakers like Renee Syler, Chris Brogan, and Guy Kawasaki. I get to spend 3 days with some of my favorite people in the blogosphere (I’m not going to name them…less I miss any!)….and I get to meet their families! In these interwebs and at conferences we do form amazing relationships with other bloggers….people who “get” what we do. Those people are in large part who they are because of their families….to have this opportunity to meet this other part of their lives and to share mine with them? Extraordinary.
I’m not going to even try to play cool when it comes to the fact that I get to take my kids to Walt Disney World. I mean: WALT DISNEY WORLD!! I have been there once before….for one day….when I was in college. That’s it. I can only imagine what is in store for us….but what sits in the front of my mind is the look of sheer amazement and joy on the faces of all three SuperKids when they see that castle looming before them….or when walking down the street towards them is: Mickey Mouse! Not a lot in this world can make me happier than sheer joy emanating from my children. Shhhhh…We aren’t telling them where they are headed until we arrive at the park!!
crazy adventurous people we are, SuperDad and I have decided to road trip our little ol’ family down to Florida. That’s right: 2 adults and a 6, 4 and 2 year old in the minivan….headed for fun. Sounds sort of Griswoldian, doesn’t it? (I blame Shannan for making it sound feasible).
I’m planning like a mad woman. I’ve researched tricks and tips for car travel with the kids (and by researched, I of course mean I scoured Pinterest). I rest comfortably in the knowledge that even if everything goes
to hell in a hand basket out the window, our disastrous misadventure will at least make for good blog fodder. I may be blogging for my sanity.