One of the first things the speech therapist from ECI taught me was that Wade's fits were the only way he knew to communicate with me. (Took me forever to realize he was throwing a fit in the parking lot at Target because he wanted to go into the side with the blue doors, not side with the green ones.) She suggested I talk about what I was doing whenever he was with me to help him learn that he could use his words to get his needs met. So I did. I talked about everything. "See that plane? We live close to the airport; that's why we see so many air planes. They're big and loud and go really fast and really high. Oh, look at that truck cut in front of Mommy. That's not safe. It's rude, too. I really hate it when big trucks get in front of me and then slow down. Mommy is experiencing what they call road rage."
Anyway... I tried to pay more attention to what was happening when Wade had a fit so I could see what it was he really wanted. He'd pitch little fits when we were driving around town, and I finally realized he was doing it whenever there was a Starbucks in sight. Every time I went to Starbucks, I'd get myself a coffee and then get him a marble pound cake. So that was it! He wanted a marble pound cake. Once I figured that out, I'd pull into Starbucks whenever he had a marble pound cake fit and say, "You want a pound cake. Here's a pound cake." After a few weeks, I realized I couldn't keep doing that. Not only was it too expensive, I felt like I was just rewarding the fits. One morning, we were coming up on a Starbucks, and I decided that no matter how big the fit was, I was not going to pull in. No matter what. No. Matter. What. As we passed by, I braced myself for the screaming that I knew was about to come from the back seat.
But he didn't throw a fit. He said, "Cake."
I broke at least three traffic laws to get to that Starbucks.