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Don’t Say That Word

5 Comments 01 June 2010

M.H. & Marcus at Special Olympics

I read a post on another blog called Rock on Mommies that talks about her little girl swearing.  It made me laugh…out loud.  I am sure it would raise some eye brows from lots of folks I know.  Cursing is a really, really bad thing to do in the world I grew up in and in the world in which I currently reside.

I know it is, as my best friend says to her children, “poor judgement,” sometimes, but honestly, there are times when there just aren’t other words that adequately suffice.  I don’t think I was very much of a fan of cursing until my husband went to school to become a preacher.  Ironic, huh?

Or maybe it was when my daughter, the one who couldn’t say a word until she was five, started talking and one of the very first phrases was full of profanity.  And, no, it wasn’t from me!

M.H. (my daughter) was placed in a classroom for mentally retarded kids when she was four.  And on her very first day, a day I will never forget, we met Marcus.  He was this beautiful little boy who had Downs Syndrome and an awful potty mouth.  The first phrase I heard him say was “Fu#@&* you bitch!” to the teacher.  I was stunned, but took some solace in the fact that M.H. couldn’t talk yet.  The year moved along and by spring, M.H. was beginning to try to put words together and of course, we were excited!

We took a trip out to San Diego to stay with a Minister and his wife to basically interview for a future job with his church.  It was while we were there, in his house, that M.H. unveiled her new phrase of choice, “[email protected]#$ ass.”  It was shocking and funny all at the same time.  We were completely unable to do anything about it and thus humbled to the core.

Thus began my new relationship with cursing.  The words that my religious culture found so offensive were still “bad” words, but they were in my life to stay.  Trying to get an obsessive compulsive retarded child to stop doing something is like trying to nail jello to a wall.

We eventually left Marcus when we left St. Louis, but those phrases are still spinning around in M.H.’s head and periodically fly out, even five years later.  And yes, they have been joined by my slip-ups of damn, hell and an occasional shit (ha!).  But for those of you who look down your noses at parents like me, you know, us cursing parents, well, come walk a day in my shoes and see if you don’t let a few fly!

Here’s to Marcus and M.H. and all of the other completely oblivious people out there who curse without knowing its bad.  Aren’t there more important things to worry about after all…like caring for people like Marcus and M.H.?

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5 Comments so far

  1. lois says:

    Hahaha! Speaking as one with whom you were staying, we thought it was hilarious. Especially when MH would say F*** you and C would try to cover it up by saying, Yes, buckle!…your seat belt. And then MH would correct her even more loudly. Another good one was the N-word which C would try to turn into nickel. Hey–if you can’t laugh about it, you’d be crying all the time. That’s why I’m president of the CCC (Christian Cussing Club).

    • Jorja says:

      Lois, Ha! yes, I do remember nickel! and we eventually turned f#*@& ass into focus! so if my good friends here me saying, “focus, focus, focus” they know what i really mean!

  2. Lori Hendrix says:

    I, unfortunately know all to well the full extent of the English language in the Hendrix household. “Remember your audience.” Sometimes, nothing else but the f bomb will suffice.

  3. Enger says:

    Jorja – I’m a friend of Andy’s from Darlington, and I’m really enjoying your blog. Just had to comment on this post, as your daughter and I have something in common. When my family moved to Rome (I was 5 years old), my parents were checking out all the different churches in town. The minister from First Baptist was visiting with them at our house. I chose that moment to burst in the room and ask the meaning of the new word (F*@!) I’d just learned from the boys across the street. Fortunately, everyone – minister included – had a great sense of humor about it. Life wouldn’t be worth much if we couldn’t laugh about these kinds of things 🙂

    • Jorja says:

      Enger, thanks for reading, so grateful to have stories like yours! Hilarious! please pass my blog along and come back often. thanks for the giggle!

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things to make you wonder~

“I am a frayed and nibbled survivor in a fallen world, and I am getting along. I am aging and eaten and have done my share of eating too. I am not washed and beautiful, in control of a shining world in which everything fits, but instead am wondering awed about on a splintered wreck I've come to care for, whose gnawed trees breathe a delicate air, whose bloodied and scarred creatures are my dearest companions, and whose beauty bats and shines not in its imperfections but overwhelmingly in spite of them...” Annie Dillard

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