I was in the grocery store the other day armed with my list and a stack of coupons. I left Scott and Robby in the chip aisle where they were happily shopping for salty snacks. I was a few aisles away, enjoying a few fleeting moments of shopping solitude.
As I was rummaging through my envelope trying to retrieve a coupon for Ziploc bags, I heard a horrible screeching sound. At first it sounded like a pig being slaughtered. Then I realized that it was a child screaming. Actually, screaming is an understatement. This child was in full blown tantrum and was wailing. I felt horrible for the parents.
Having a child throw a tantrum in the middle of a store can be a frustrating and humiliating experience for the parents. I always worry that others are judging my parenting abilities as Robby throws himself on the floor, typically close to the bakery, and screams. Other than removing ourselves from the store, there is no delicate way to deal with this uncomfortable situation.
After hearing the screaming for almost a minute, I became concerned. This decibel of screeching just didn't seem natural. It sounded unlike any tantrum I've ever heard. I began to worry that the child was in pain or was scared. I went to investigate.
I walked towards the screaming and discovered that I wasn't alone with my concerns. I was following along with at least 10 other shoppers who were investigating the commotion. As I turned the corner I felt a sense of impending doom.
Imagine my horror when I discovered that the screaming child was mine. Robby was in the middle of a full blown tantrum in the center of the chip aisle. Scott was standing next to our screaming toddler, unsure of what to do with such an ill-behaved little hellion.
I worked my way through the crowd and claimed Robby Rotten. I carried him, kicking and screaming to the front of the grocery store. Scott then carried him to the car while I checked out. I would have left the groceries in the cart, but that would have necessitated a return trip to the store later that evening. This was not a place I wanted to return to in the near future.
We are still unsure what prompted Robby's tantrum. Lately my sweet little boy morphs into Robby Rotten for no known reason. I attribute this to his age, although part of me worries. After all, he was supposed to be born on 6/6/06!