I have to say that I'm pretty surprised by this. She likes all of the components of the class--bouncy houses, other kids, big space to run around, toys--but for some reason put it all together and she gets completely clingy and crying. I feel torn by wanting to comfort her on the sidelines and wanting to interact with Finn who's thoroughly enjoying himself.
Today all bets were off though by the mere mention of a parachute being brought out to be played with. Megan lost her shit. She screamed and sobbed and everyone stared. I had to sit with her on the bleachers hugging her and trying to calm her down, but she was inconsolable. The teachers approached me and said that if I needed to I could take her out or leave early or do what I needed to do, which was nice but I just tried to explain the unexplainable...Megan has a thing with parachutes.
I don't know why. When she was really little we had her in Little Gym classes and they frequently brought out the parachute to play with. Megan loved it. She loved it so much that she started making up stories about the parachute game. We'd talk about the parachute all of the time. That's all she thought about. We'd talk about the things to do with a parachute, (go under, shake it, walk around in a circle, throw balls on it); the parachute became a character in itself, and I dare say, she was obsessed with it.
One day at a yard sale we found an old small parachute and thought we'd buy it for her. Her very own parachute! She saw us buying it and was stoked but then she realized we were bringing it home with us and she flipped out big time. It took weeks of cajoling before she became comfortable playing with it. But she still wasn't going to have anything to do with that Kids Gym parachute by golly!
I think that Megan had built parachutes up into such mythical proportions that the real thing was just...too crazy, or real or...I don't know. She can't stand the real thing, only the idea of the thing.
So all of this was happening, and I was trying to put on my game face and keep positive so that Megan didn't feel more like crap than she had to and that Finn could still feel like he could have fun. A mom approached me and made some small talk. Our children were the same age with the same difference in age and I found myself slightly losing it. You could tell she just wanted some light conversation, but the next thing I know I'm tearing up and telling her how freaking hard everything is and how having two toddlers makes me rip my hair out. I felt like I was rambling on and on and she sort of had a fixed smile and that "I'm going to back away slowly now and talk to a sane person" look on her face, so I let her go and continued to try and keep my cool.
But fuck it! It's not easy! Having a 19 month old and a 3 year old is, sometimes, too hard. How many tantrums a day do I really have to go through? (Let me tell you, the amount I go through now is TOO MUCH). I know I should be starting to potty train Finn, but I've barely got Megan potty trained and she's nearly 3 1/2! Megan had three time outs at preschool the other day and I had to talk to the teacher...and it's all just too much sometimes! I feel like poor Finn is going to need therapy because he's the neglected one...and I just don't have enough hands to do it all, or functioning brain cells to even think sometimes. I work really hard to be happy, but some days it just doesn't happen.
So, I guess in a way I can relate to Megan's screaming about the parachute. If life's like a fucking parachute, I'd want to scream too. Some big, loud, out of control thing being waved willy nilly in your face. You know it's supposed to be fun, but sometimes it's just a bit...much.