Tuesday, May 25, 2010

At the Art Institue with Grammy & Pappa

The day after Navy Pier, on the 20th, we went with my parents to the Art Institute. My dad is a history buff and wanted to check out the Renaissance paintings, and I have a membership, so we split the parking and went together.

We went with my dad for a little while, checking out some Monets, some decorative European arts, and a few other rooms, before the kids started to get a bit antsy. So, my mom and I took the kids to the Touch Gallery. We've been there before, but it still held the kid's attention for a while. They love anything they can touch. When we entered the room, Jared ran for the cut-out kight costume, the kind you can put your head into and take a picture. Right away, an uptight older lady says, "Please supervise your children." Come on. If they can't get excited and move around in this room, that's pretty sad. Don't you want to encourage children to love coming to art museums?

Well, besides that the kids enjoyed a little drawing, looking at the knight's armour, trying on the gauntlet, and a quick stop in the minature room.

They wanted to go to the Ryan Education Center before we left so, we headed across the museum. The kids really love building things with the mat cushions. They remembered last time how they made "sandwiches" out of themselves and the mats, so that's the first thing they did.

Then another set of twins, 3 year old girls, came in, and they quickly started a game of running across the top cushions and jumping off. This lasted for a little time, until the girls left, and the woman that worked in the room, kept nagging them about not running. I tried to say Jared really needed to move around. If he doesn't, watch out!

So, the kids started to build something. I think it was a house, or cave, but they really were cooperating pretty well.

Well, Jared started to get really excited, so he started running across the room to get more mats. And both kids started singing and humming a little loudly, but nothing obnoxious, at least I didn't think so. There was another woman in there with a little boy, and they were working on the computer. She started to turn around and give dirty looks when the kids started to get louder. Please. If you want it really quiet, don't come to a room with lots of playthings to do quiet work. I let myself feel pressured into telling the kids to be quieter. Alexa came to me right away, but by now, Jared was too excited and worked up about his project, and he wouldn't come by me. Every time I tried to bend down to tell him something, he dashed away from me. I caught up to him and picked him up, and that's when all hell broke loose.

He started screaming his head off. I quickly carried him into the bathroom, where we spent close to 15 minutes of him trying to swing and kick at me. I tried very hard to tell him if he would be quiet and listen we could go back to the room, but he was beside himself. People started coming in, so I carried him into a stall with me, and finally, finally he started crying softly, and I picked him up and held him tight. He said he had a headache, and I tried to explain that's what happens when you cry hard for a long time. It really was the most intense tantrum he's ever had before. It wasn't the longest, but the intensity was really scary.  I really can't describe it fully, but it was really bad.

We left shortly after that, and he fell asleep in the car. He was much more calm that afternoon, making up a game with Alexa where they'd turn over the garbage can and pretend it was a ship. I love, love, love his creative energy, how he's a fantastic builder, and makes up marvelous stories, but it is very, very difficult to raise such an intense child. Can anyone else relate?

1 comment:

Andrea said...

Intense boys are my specialty! It can be really hard. It took me YEARS to fully understand how my now 10 year old experiences the world. I plan most of our daily stuff around how he can handle it. That usually means only one outing, not-crowded places, plenty of snacks he likes on hand, and always places that he can move. I tried for many years to make him a quiet, still child, but that isn't him and it never will be. We didn't start going to movies until he was 8. He saw fireworks for the first time at age 9 and hated every minute of it (too loud, too many people, too late). You are not alone, and the sooner you are able to ignore other peoples looks and be concerned only with how your son is feeling, the better you both will be.