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I don't have a poltergeist. Or do I? Nope. I just have a normal almost five-year-old girl who still has the occasional, earth-shattering tantrum. Shouldn't tantrums be over by now? According to GOOGLE, the answer is no (GOOGLE is like a doctor). I should be happy that her tantrums are less frequent, although they are still epic (like Lord of the Rings epic, meaning continuous and giant in scope, returning to theatres every two years and with excellent cinematography).
Bean's last tantrum lasted two hours. I could have left and gone to see any Academy Award nominated film and returned home to find her still pounding her tiny fist against the wall. Instead, I sat there and I tried everything and I mean everything to calm her down. I promised ice cream mid- way through. The kid screamed out "no" to ice cream. HELLO?!?!?!? Clearly, a poltergeist!
When she was toddler, her tantrums were frequent. They were awful by all accounts. When my dad witnessed one, he insisted the we call a doctor. They were bad, but she was small and I was bigger so physically, they weren't so draining. Now, Bean is bigger and physically violent. Plus, she's so strong. When she was kicking and punching the gate, I was afraid that she might physically pull the whole thing down. Each time I tried to wrap my arms around her in a hug, she pulled her body away with such force that I was afraid, she'd thrust herself backwards and fall. Her tears came down in torrents and her mouth was foaming like a rabid dog.
In the middle of the outburst, her spit was coming out tinged with blue. Her facial color was already off because of her heart condition. I was looking at my purplish, screaming child who then started spitting blue and my mind frantically tried to understand why she was spitting blue. This can't be related to her heart. Can it? Her face was such an off color though. Why the blue spit? Did she get into the Downy? The dish detergent pods? The Windex? My mind was racing. All those chemicals are locked up. But if she did get into it, then maybe that would explain this tantrum. Her crazy behavior would have an external causal link, and not just because I said that naked dance party was over. I could call 911 and paramedics would arrive and fix my tantrumming daughter and return her to her normal, pleasant self and we could go back to songs, books and cuddles. Then again, I don't want her to have accidentally ingested anything poisonous. And I know my house and her capabilities. She can barely button her pajamas. A child safe lock is definitely too advanced for her.
"Did you eat a blue crayon or a blue marker?" I ask her calmly while she's shouting in my face for what seems like an eternity. "I'm not mad," I tell her. I just need to know. She looks at me with what can only be described as unhinged fury, and screams "NOOOOOOOOO!" I ask her again because the corners of her mouth are filling up again with blue spit and I see her tongue is tinged blue, but then again her nail beds are purple as well as her lips. "NOOOOOOOO! she screams angrily and then adds "Would you stop asking me that?"
In the back of my head, I wonder if I should call someone. Anyone really. I was sure at any moment the police would roll up and question me for the unholy sounds that were coming from our house. Poor little HT hid for a while behind a chair and then kept trying to hug Bean or give her a kiss to no avail. Finally she, gave up and retreated to her bedroom.
And yet, Bean continued on. For two whole hours. When it was over, she collapsed into my arms. Sad. Defeated. Exhausted. I stroked her back. With her head on my shoulder, she whispered in my ear "I might have eaten a blue marker." Finally, I got her into bed and read to her while she held my hand. "I love you mommy. You are the nicest person I know," she said while she drifted off to sleep.
I left her room and went into my own room and cried. I cried because I was tired. I cried because I wanted to scream and cry earlier and I didn't. Most of all cried, because my daughter was clearly in so much pain earlier and there was nothing I could do to assuage any of it. I felt helpless, much like how she felt when she was screaming and pounding on the walls.
I went downstairs and ate a brownie and chugged a glass of milk. I hastily cleaned the detritus of dinner and there on the floor, by the dishwasher I saw it: the blue crayola marker or as I will always think of it, "cyanotic teal."