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Today’s prompt for NaBloPoMo, courtesy The Daily Post, is:

 Describe the last time you were surprised by the intensity of a feeling you had about something, or were surprised at how strongly you reacted to something you thought wouldn’t be a big deal.

As mothers, I think we tend to react strongly to issues. I am not really sure what causes it, but it’s true. Looking back at my years in college, I distinctly recall being more relaxed, whether it was with respect to a particular person or even an unpleasant incident.

If I were to single out one aspect of my character, which has surprised me in the last 7 years(yes, that’s when motherhood kicked in), it’s how intensely I reacted to little slip-ups or pardonable offences made by my child. And the feeling became so overwhelming that it would invariably lead to the same round of emotions- Anger, Yelling, Guilt, Self-pity, Remorse- all for what? Because Gy had not responded to the fifth time of my asking her to put her toys away.

What worried me was a passing comment made by the spouse one day. He said, ‘Looks like your yelling voice has become your normal voice.’ That stopped me in my tracks, long enough to pause and reflect on what I was doing to the innocence of my child , to the possible emotional fabric of her psyche and to the precious relationship that we shared.

That was when I sought out and undertook the Orange Rhino challenge. To keep it realistic, I took it up for a week, at first. To make myself accountable,I kept a daily journal and posted it here on the blog. I invited close friends and family to follow me on the blog and to encourage me by sharing how they felt about it.

Once the week was up, I decided to extend it to a month. The thrill that came out of completing the challenge was tantamount to scaling a hilly peak. And, although it hasn’t been a ‘yell-free’ fest ever since, it has reduced dramatically. Today, if I do raise my voice, Gy knows I mean business and not because I am doing it out of habit. It’s not the perfect solution, but it is a promising start.

As a result of the challenge, I got back to blogging more actively. I have made some lovely friends through my readers and other bloggers. My social presence on Twitter and Google+ has increased.They have , in turn, put me in touch with some spectacular articles on positive parenting and mothering techniques.

What has really surprised me is the intensity with which I blog today. It is something that I started as a hobby, a way to record interesting titbits , a way to catalogue the growth of my daughter. Instead, what it has become is so much more. Through the blog, I find myself evolving. I stay open to new experiences and diverse opinions on parenting. I am far more open to criticism now. I am willing to step back and view a situation through the lens of the other parent.

My blog has helped me to introspect on what it means, to parent with a difference.

Guess what, we are all doing this our way; and the best part? There is no wrong way.

{This post is part of my contribution to #NaBloPoMo, 2013}

Categories: Yelling

Shailaja V

Hi there! I'm Shailaja Vishwanath, a blogger with 12 years of blogging experience and a parent to a teen. I work as a digital marketing and social media consultant. From positive parenting tips to useful productivity hacks, social media advice to blogging advice, you'll find them all right here. Welcome to my blog.


Schmutzie · November 6, 2013 at 4:14 am

Making a strong habit of blogging is what has kept me at it and loving it for over ten years. It works!

Robbie K · November 6, 2013 at 6:08 am

Challenges can be invigorating and motivating!

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