Defeated, but Determined

Defeated, but Determined

You may have won the battle, but you haven’t won the war

-Author , Unknown

I’m beginning to think this anonymous chap had me in mind when he said these words.

Just last week, I started drafting this triumphant post of how I had managed to conquer the yelling monster and had gone 150 days straight without shouting at Gy. Yes, I did! So, small pat on the back, if you please and do I hear the strains of applause from my devoted readers? Yes, yes, I can hear it. Well, you can stop clapping.

Because, I broke the streak. At 155 days, to be precise.

And what caused it? The most ridiculous thing ever. She hadn’t brought her homework from school.

Yes, yes, I know. I am a horrible mother, not worthy of sympathy. Believe me, I’ve said it to myself a hundred times since it happened. The worst part was I didn’t even realise it was happening. There I sat, in my chair, looking her in the face, her eyes brimming over , as I reprimanded her. And the tidal wave of anger was full and overwhelming, so much so that I didn’t pause for breath, for nearly three minutes. When I did take a break, she looked up and in a choked voice, asked me, ‘But, why are you shouting at me for this?’ Then, she followed it up with a hug, her hot tears staining my cheek, as she wept profusely.

Hearing those words, it hit home. I had relapsed. After nearly six months of positive parenting, learning to let go, taking time, slowing down, everything had come crashing down. The edifice of pride that I’d built tumbled down, right alongside. I sat there, broken and defeated. All those weeks of being a patient person had been rendered futile. Just one episode and I cracked, and how!

I shuddered, both physically and from within, since I understood that it wasn’t easy being at the receiving end of the yelling.

It’s not easy having someone glower at you, while you’re doing your work.

It’s not easy to explain yourself when the other person is too busy shouting to listen.

But, after this happened, and my mind had cooled, I had a choice before me: stay defeated or be determined. I had yelled, so, what next? Obviously, there is that feeling of guilt. Let it happen, for without it, the need to reform may not occur. Here’s the thing, though. Use it as a prop for better things, not as a crutch to continue doing what you do. If you let the guilt guide you to a more determined YOU, there’s your next battle being won.

Next, I decided that I would have to tackle this new-found trigger (her not bringing homework) from a different angle (I’m trying out some tactics and that will, hopefully, be a new post). Yelling at her doesn’t help. It only tells her that Mom will yell if I don’t bring it home. It won’t motivate her to actually bring it home.

Finally, be determined. You’ve relapsed before and you’ve succeeded before. So, there is always hope!

There was a small part of me that didn’t want to write this post- a part that wanted to keep it quiet and sweep it under the rug of ignorance. But, I couldn’t bring myself to do it. If I have triumphed, I am ready to share it with the world. The same goes for my defeats: I must share those as well.

For, without the two, there can never be progress, on the personal path that we have chalked out for ourselves. And, if I can learn from this defeat, to rise on to determination and decide that this is worth doing, I’m sure that when I look back, I will be the happier for having shared my story.

Linking to ABC Wednesday: D is for Defeat and Determination

Linking this post to theΒ 

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0 thoughts on “Defeated, but Determined

  1. A big HUG to you Shailaja, for writing this one. I know how tough it can be to open up your innermost feelings like this!
    The not bringing homework thing, funnily enough didn't bother me :P. Our triggers can be so different and yet have the same end result!

  2. I'll take all the hugs I can get, Aparna. Felt so low after this episode. The triggers can be so deadly at times. Sigh, hope the streak lasts longer this time. Nice to see you back here πŸ˜‰

  3. Hugs Shailaja! Its really tough … and your determination to keep going is laudable. Not many have it in them.
    I battle with this too.. though I have not kept a count of the number of days I am able to keep my calm.. maybe I should try that as well.
    Keep going… best wishes to you πŸ™‚

  4. I think it's a worthy effort, and you needn't be too hard on yourself. I've stopped yelling, though The Daughter calls every time I Clip My Words To Make A Point yelling.
    ROG, ABC Wednesday team

  5. I know this feeling so well.. The 'after having yelled' feeling, and realising that t wasn't worth it at all. Glad you're determined though. Hope this new streak lasts forever.

  6. Understanding yourself IS working! Look at your success – almost 6 months of patience. Now keep on keeping on and don't forget to apologize to your daughter about your lapse (not her forgetting, just YOUR lapse). Looking forward to your next post. Remember – we are only human.

    abcw team

  7. Breathe, very, very deeply next time. Kuddos for you to realize and analyse yourself and the situation – many parents won't even reach that stage. Breathe, and move on. <3

  8. Sigh, it's terrible, isn't it? Yes, I am. And I am partly glad this happened, since I don't want to lapse into complacence. Hope this streak lasts too πŸ™‚ Thanks!

  9. Am more inclined to believe that the source of your stress/es lay elsewhere. And Gy, caught in the wrong place at the wrong time… We often vent out our vexations on the ones dearest to us. Not fair, but very very human. I am guilty of this too. But what really counts is your willingness to rise up and start all over again. Good luck akka, and I bet, you will outperform your present score at the yell-free counter!

    Besides, if you rephrase the opening lines, they would read – 'It is ok to lose a battle or two. What's more important is to win the war.' And going by your determined stance, you are already at it!

  10. I did apologise, Leslie πŸ™‚ One of the first things I started doing after undertaking the Orange Rhino challenge. Always admit when you are wrong πŸ™‚ And I love what you said, Apologise for my lapse, not HER forgetting. Excellent words!

  11. And you, being the sweetheart that you are, would believe that πŸ™‚ Sigh, no, it was all the homework. Maybe at some subconscious level, I had other triggers, but none that should have made me erupt the way I did. Thank you for the support, Priya. It is always welcome

  12. I am so glad to see the flood of responses on this post and with practically everyone being so supportive, I am sure that my determination will not go in vain. Love your Support!

  13. I used to feel good about myself too for not losing my temper (once upon a time).. Now, I try not to ..but do not succeed as often as I would like.. but determination and hope – that is what keeps us going..

  14. As I have discussed before, this is a process, slow and painful as it may be, it is certainly rewarding. With every stumble, I try to pick myself up, dust it off and continue. Hoping that the determination lasts very long on this one πŸ™‚

  15. Shailaja, I love your honesty in this post. “But, after this happened, and my mind had cooled, I had a choice before me: stay defeated or be determined. I had yelled, so, what next? Obviously, there is that feeling of guilt. Let it happen, for without it, the need to reform may not occur. Here's the thing, though. Use it as a prop for better things, not as a crutch to continue doing what you do. If you let the guilt guide you to a more determined YOU, there's your next battle being won.” So much wisdom in that small paragraph. Thank you for sharing your success AND your struggle. It's very inspirational. xoKaren

  16. You warm my heart. Trust you to pick out the one paragraph that I personally loved writing. It's bloggers like you and so many others, who with your raw truth and honesty, make me a better blogger. So, thank you!

  17. I never tire of hearing supportive comments and the more I write, the more people reach out to comfort and offer solace. This is exactly why I blog. Thank you for reading πŸ™‚

  18. I too had a very very very short fuse years back, which is now just 'very' from 'very very very' πŸ˜€ It is difficult to control our temper sometimes, and as the adage goes, an angry man is angrier with himself when he returns to reasons !
    Sincere appreciation for having spoken out through this post. Yes, we are human, so let's take it healthily and make it work positive πŸ™‚

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