What triggers, my triggers?

41 days down, 324 to go!

Dear Muscles,
With all this digging I’ve been doing, where the heck are my beautifully sculpted arms? They still look flabby and gross. Can I at least get a little bit of tone going on? After all, spring is around the corner and I would love to wear some sleeveless, flirty, non-maternity dresses!

Much obliged,
The Orange Rhino


41 days down. I’m psyched. 324 to go? I’m totally terrified.  Because this is hard, hard, wicked hard work! The first two weeks not yelling were easy – the adrenaline from realizing I could actually not yell and the novelty of my new persona drove me to succeed. And then reality set in, the adrenaline vanished and it became hard work. Holy SH*T! It took A LOT, and I mean a heck of A LOT of energy to achieve days 15 to 25 ish days which made me think is this sustainable? If so, how will I sustain it?

Do I remove all the legos from the house since they drive me nuts when they aren’t cleaned up and I step on one? Do I give my kids chicken fingers every night so there are less fights? Do I wear a bathing suit during bath time so I don’t care if I get splashed? Do I keep figuring out my triggers and try to remove the ones I can? Yes.

Do I just keep responding to these triggers by taking deep breaths, stomping my feet, walking out of the room, laughing at situations, taking pictures, whispering to the kids, reminding myself they are just kids, and posting on Facebook when I am going to blow? Yes.

And then I had a big, gigantic Orange Rhino Revelation that is great, but that totally sucks too. Sure, I can do all of the above things. And obviously the latter set I have to do, but if I want this all to be easier, to be less hard work, and more natural, more a part of me, I have to do some serious, personal hard work first. I have to figure out, not just the surface level triggers, not just how to respond to them, but I have to figure out what is triggering my triggers.

What really drives me to yell?
What is at the ROOT of my yelling?

Sure it’s easy to blame it on my kids annoying behavior. Their behavior might (definitely) suck at particular moments and YES kids can be ANNOYING but it’s my choice as to how to handle it. While it might take 2 people to tango, and it might seem like it takes 2 people to yell (1 as the yeller, 1 as the instigator), it really only takes 1 person to yell. It takes me.

It is up to ME to control MY voice.

I have to decide whether or not I will yell. My kiddos can instigate all they want but unless they are saying “mommy yell at me” or coming over to pry my mouth open to yell, they aren’t making me yell (even if it feels like it).

And while I can try my darnest to teach them to ditch their annoying behaviors, to teach them to not interrupt when I am on the phone, to not wrestle each other on the coffee table, to not throw their plate across the kitchen (which by the way when full of food is just AWESOME), at the end of the day,

no matter what I wish, there is only one person whose behavior I can control. Mine.

Which means I have to better understand myself and why I yell. I just can’t ENTIRELY blame my yelling on my kiddos. Yes, sometimes I can and will blame them, like when #2 shakes the babies pack n play with him in it and I’ve politely and clearly told him numerous times before that is a definite no-no and he knows it. And well sometimes I can just blame my desire to yell on having a bad day. We all have them. But for the most part, I have to, no, I WANT TO look deeper because I feel that will help ME make yelling (more of) a thing of the past. And that is the hard sh*tty part!

Looking in the mirror can be really UGLY. Being honest, being really really truly deeply honest can be UGLY. And Hard. And it can feel like a relief to tell the truth, like a burden is lifted, but sometimes the process of getting there can suck. Like the last 2 weeks + of my life. It sucked.

It was easy to say I yell too much, that was obvious to everyone in my house. My kids, my husband, my parents, my in-laws, anyone who walked through my door and stayed more than 48 hours could tell you I yell too much. Then it was easy to say I yell too much because I am Impatient. But why I am so impatient? I am tired, stressed, overwhelmed, have four kids blah, blah, blah.

But Why? (do I sound like a kid yet? Why Mommy? Why? Why? Why? Why? )

Why am I stressed? Why am I overwhelmed?

Having to figure out why I yell too much, what if anything I can CHANGE,  and then ADMIT it, admit what I have to do to change, well that ain’t easy and it isn’t entirely pretty either.

Which is why I haven’t been blogging as much. Because this digging has been HARD WORK and mentally exhausting. I’ve figured out some things that I just don’t want to write about and see LIVE on “paper” because it means they are REAL. These “things” that if I decide to work on, decide to commit to and change, mean even more hard work. And I mean really, do I REALLY have time for more work???

But someone told me you only work hard at things you care about and are passionate about. Well this, The Orange Rhino Challenge, my not yelling at my kids for 365 days, I sure as heck am passionate about.

So of course I have the time. It just might mean I won’t blog as much as I like!

Wondering what I discovered? Oh well what fun would that be if I told you all my dark secrets here, in one post??? Stay tuned! I still have to find the courage to write about them!


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6 thoughts on “What triggers, my triggers?

  1. Pingback: Some days, I don’t know how to parent… | The Orange Rhino Challenge

    • Thanks for reading! I hope you don’t mind, I took out my name (hence the edit) as I trying to remain anonymous. Yeah, we’ll see how long that lasts!! 

  2. For me it’s not that I don’t care anymore it’s that there are just battles that are worth it and not worth it…I can tell my son to brush his teeth, whisper it, remind him in singsong but mostly finding a place where it’s effortless made it one less battle in the am…smallest person wants to wear undies only…no problem, but you’ll be cold…middle child no you cannot pee outdoors but if you do don’t do it right next to the street (it’s poor form)…
    I am not a single mother, I am however on my own for the most part and I have to conserve the energy I have so I can battle when it’s really time I guess…I’ll do hairbrushing til smallest child screams and runs away but I’m not going to yell about it…I’ll yell if and when they run into the street because that’s when you yell, when it’s important and scares them because it ought to and that there is a difference between “picking up your goddamn legos” and “don’t run into the street”! 
    When I yell about everything nothing gets through…when I choose to make a big deal out of something because it is in fact a big deal it get through…still the whisper works…and the seething scary whisper probably has to be added to my list…

    • “When I yell about everything, nothing gets through.” YUP. So true!!! As is picking your battles. It’s amazing (sad) what I have realized I used to get upset about. Thanks for reading!  

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