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90 minutes. That is how long my daughter’s most recent tantrum lasted. 90 minutes. At a Target parking lot to top it off. 90 minutes. That’s stamina.

What is it she wanted you ask? A $3 hat. All was going well on this Target shopping trip and then came time to checkout. She decided one hat wasn’t enough and she now wanted two hats. 4-year olds cannot see well into the future. She failed to realize that I am the holder of the money, I am the decision maker, and most important, I am the adult. I told the cashier to take the hats back, we would not be purchasing them and that is when it started. 2:00 pm on a sunny Sunday afternoon in Target. Tantrum. Full blown.

I am, for the most part, a pretty level headed parent. And I remained one this entire tantrum while on the inside screaming and wondering if I was a bad mother for doing this to her. “What’s the big deal? Just go back inside and get the hat!” It is so hard to watch your child struggle, even in situations like this, with the hurt and angst that I had somewhat caused. Mom fail. Deep down I know this is all part of growing up and learning. Sure isn’t easy though, being a parent. It hurts to have to be tough on them when all you want to do is give them the world. And it’s hard. So hard. To go nonstop when all you want to do is take a much overdo nap. The book What to Expect When You’re Expecting is followed up by other helpful books to mothers as your child grows. I feel they are missing one crucial point in all of them though, “moms, this is going to be the most challenging thing you will ever do in your life and, at times, it’s going to suck.” It is okay to admit that being a mother is backbreaking. On so many levels. And guess what, everyone else agrees, even if they don’t say it out loud. But 100% worth it all. I wouldn’t change one ounce of it because I love being a mother. It is the best thing to ever happen to me. She is the best thing to ever happen to me.

After those 90 minutes were over, we discussed the situation. She used her words to the best of her capabilities and I was proud of that young little girl. Looking into those big beautiful, teary blue eyes I see her smile. She knows it is all going to be okay, and that her mommy loves her no matter what. And I never miss an opportunity to tell her that.

How did we wrap that chaotic moment in time? We had our weekly mother and daughter date at Starbucks. Buttered croissant and chocolate milk for the kiddo and I will have a caramel frappuccino light, decaf please.