Saturday, February 02, 2013

What Will I Have Left?


As everyone who has read this blog in the last month or two knows, I have quit smoking. (Day 41 9 hours, 8 minutes. I've given up counting the seconds so I must be getting better.) Giving up cigarettes was easy compared to my next inhuman feat: I am giving up ~sigh, gasp and clutch my freaking pearls~ cursing.

Do you know how hard this is gonna be for me? Cursing was my second language. It was my poetry.

Ask me why I am trying to be cleaner with my vocabulary and I can spit out a dozen reasons (I'm more mature, I'm better than bad language, it's not ladylike, I'm Christian, and on and on), but the real reason?

He walks. He talks. He COPIES everything I do.
Yep. It's all because of that little kid there.

I adore him. Everything he does is a wonder to me. No matter what is going on or what he's getting into, if I do just a couple notes of a song, he starts smiling and bopping his head. He's a huge piece of my heart. And in the past few weeks, he has started watching every word coming from between my lips.

The other day, I was visiting with my niece and sister and we all sat around my sister's room, chatting and looking over some recipe books. Baby D.J. was back and forth, going from my sister's room and down the hall to his mom and dad's room. No worries, he's gated in from the stairs and he's got his puppy to play with. It was a very "family" kind of scene - all quiet and cozy (and quiet is rare for us). I was at peace with the world until we heard D.J. talking to his puppy.

"Shit, Sadow!"

("Sadow" is really "Shadow," the little lab mix puppy.)

We ladies went dead silent and waited to see if we had heard D.J. right.

"SHIT! SHIT! No, Sadow, SHIT!"

Right. Now, I don't think it's fair that my sister and my niece were suddenly looking at me like I was the one who farted in church. It's not like they never use a curse word...

But, okay, okay. I am woman enough to admit that I have had, on occasion, a bit of a potty-mouth. But, understand this, I am not a half-stepping kind of chick. When I love, I love hard. If I am mad, I'm boiling. When I curse... Well, let's just say, I don't mess around with the playground type of language. I get down and dirty. Am I proud of that? I used to be, yeah. I have 4 brothers and, for years, I worked around a bunch of mean and stressed out men - not my brothers. I can run rough with the big boys when it comes to "cussing." If D.J. had picked up a word or two from me, it wasn't going to be something found in the Bible - like "ass" or "damn." The ess-aitch-i-tee word is not a whopping big deal, right?

Still, I had Mother Theresa and the Queen of England looking at me like I'd better go handle the situation. As if I can make a baby understand bad words when he can't even say five "good" ones... But I decided to try.

When I got to the hallway and saw D.J. pointing his finger at the dog and tapping him on the head, it dawned on me what was really going on.

"Shit, Sadow."

I reported back to the Inquisition panel.

"He's trying to make Shadow sit," I told them before we all fell out laughing. I just about wet myself.

Still. That episode gave me something to think about. This little kid loves me and, for the time being, he thinks I'm fabulous. He's pretty amazing to me and I have a responsibility to be a good example to him. He already knows about love - because we show him every day what that is. He knows not to spit and hit. We are teaching him to count and give hugs and feel empathy. The only thing I don't want him to learn from me is how to curse. At least, not before he learns how to pray for someone.

So, yeah. No more cursing for "YaYa Tru." Damnit. (Give me a little break. This is only Day 4.) I think I will learn sign language. Can you curse in sign language?


Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it. Prov. 22:6

"Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education." Dr. Martin Luther King