How One Screaming Child I Didn’t Know Taught Me a Lesson

Today I was in the library just casually doing my normal routine of writing and book hunting. However, as like any day, there are things that happen out of the ordinary that is sometimes beyond your control. During my library visit, I notice as I was walking by that there was a very unhappy 2-year old throwing a fit with his grandmother because he wasn’t ready to leave the library. I mean who wants to leave the library as a kid anyway right lol. They love the library and all the cool books, electronics, play areas that it has to offer. But the boy was just crying up a storm, kicking, and throwing himself all over the place. I watched, however, the grandmother who was being patient with him, but had a face of distress and somewhat embarrassed as she saw her grandchild was the only one throwing the fit at that moment. I mean we have all been there a time or two, when a child is just showing out and you feel like your the only one and you just want it to be done and over with lol. The grandmother, however, was continuing to struggle as she desperately attempted to pick the kicking and screaming two years old up and put him in the stroller. The stroller in which he kept sliding out of.

I obviously didn’t want to stand gawking as she struggled with him I knew she would get him together eventually, so I continued to walk towards the café part of the library to enjoy my cup of coffee.  Slowly but surely the grandmother had managed but still struggling to at least get the two year old up by the front door, which was clearly not easy as her face was as red as a cherry and her breaths were deep from exhaustion of picking him up and attempting to continue to put in the stroller as he was, you guessed it kicking and screaming still.  She was continuing to struggle and now everyone was watching as he was throwing himself on the floor. There was something in me that just said step in, help her somehow. At that moment I didn’t know how I a stranger was going to help this woman who was clearly this child’s grandma get him under control. But needless to say, I listened to the nudge God was placing in my spirit and I did it.


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As a mother myself, I remember several things I had learned from various parenting classes about being able to control your own emotions as your child is emotional but also one of the key things that have helped me which is distracting the mind. So, I got down on my knees on the floor with the child and looked him in the eye as the grandmother looked at me like who are you lol. I began to just talk to the child, rubbing his back and begin to talk to him about the birds outside, and looking at the cars. He wasn’t really interested in that as he continued to scream no lol, but I also remember learning that little kids love competition, races, and anything they can win at. I said to the little boy ” can you race me to your grandma’s car?”, and he just lit up like a little light bulb and said “Yes”, with enthusiasm. In that exact moment, he stopped the crying.

Then I just continued on with what had his attention asking him to show me grandma’s car, asking him if he could beat me and so forth. Before you know it, we had stood up off the floor and were out the door of the library.

The grandmother turned and looked at me and said: ” thank you, now that we are outside he should be okay”. I told her she was welcome and went back inside.

This not only made me feel really great that I was able to make someone else’s day a little easier but also put in perspective that we have to sometimes distract the mind from what we think we want to what we actually need.

That little boy wanted to stay longer, but he needed to do what his grandmother said. All I simply did was distract his mind from what he was focusing on wanting to what he needed to focus on which was listening to grandma. But I didn’t propose in a way that he was listening to grandma, I proposed it in a way that was still interesting to him by asking him to race me.

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We sometimes have to do this not only as parents but as individuals.  We have to do this when we are creating new habits, chasing our dreams, or simply just want something better for ourselves. Think about all the times that you may have wanted something because you thought you wanted it but you got it and it ended up being something you shouldn’t have wanted. Now think about the times that you wanted something but you distracted your mind with something better. For example, I am in the midst of changing my eating and exercise habits to live a healthier lifestyle. My normal habits would have me wanting to eat junk and do little to no exercise. Now that I have a desire to do something else, when my mind tries to tell me I want those things I simply distract it with something that I want more. I want more to be healthy, feel great and look amazing, so by distracting my mind in those moments I am able to change my focus which then in turn changes my actions.

The point is if you are struggling with something sometimes it just takes a simple thought shift in order to start making those things happen. Distract your mind and focus. Now the biggest key is to know what you want. What do you really want for your life in this moment? The things that you may have wanted in the past may not be the things that you need right now. So take the time to reevaluate your life right now, what do you like or don’t like. What do you want to change or keep the same? Once you know what you really want to begin to change your actions by changing your mind and focus on the things you do want instead of what you don’t.

Remember sometimes in order to grow we have to give up what we think we want for what it is we truly need. In a sense both me, the grandma and the screaming toddler were blessed today with love and a wealth of self-knowledge.


What is one thing you want to change in your life?


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