My mother never swore. My father never swore. I don't remember any of my siblings swearing. But I am ashamed to admit that I am a different story. My ability to make a sailor blush makes me think that maybe I really was left on the doorstep in a clothes basket as an infant and am not one of them, after all.
Whatever the case, whenever I get really frustrated, bad language will flow from my lips like the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon gorge.
When I started throwing IOU's in the curse cup because I ran out of money, I knew that I had a problem. Try as I might to shield our children from the dump that is my mouth when I get angry, there have been moments when their delicate ears are exposed to my vernacular garbage.
It shames me to write that.
I know I must do better. By and large, I don't curse at all around our children, but $*#%!! it is so difficult for me to hold my tongue when a 3-year old hijacks a new container of mayonnaise out of the refrigerator and squeezes it all over the kitchen counter, their hair - their siblings hair - and the cordless phone you accidentally left within their reach.
Recently, I came to the conclusion that I am completely incapable of not cursing, it's just not a reality for me. Especially not as the mother of three year old triplets. I'd have better luck willing my blue eyes to be brown.
Although I think the idea of a curse cup is a good one, the punishment of a quarter for each time I uttered, or screamed as is often the case, a bad word was not enough of a deterrent. So, I decided that in lieu of continuing the futile effort that came with scribbling down notes that read "Due curse cup $10.50" I would try word substitution.
With great trepidation for the respect that I am positively certain I am going to lose from many of you, I hereby admit that the absolute worst word in my bad word arsenal is the f-bomb. It is only used in the most horrific of circumstances or when I am really irate, but when it is uttered, I can honestly say that I am immediately filled with a sense of satisfaction. But that sense of satisfaction is quickly offset by self loathing at my inability to not use this dreadful word.
It's classless, I know.
Because I do not want our children being damaged by the shrapnel every time this bomb is dropped, I have tried desperately to substitute the word "berry" in it's nasty, ugly place. It is for this reason that Charlie and I had a "conversation" this past weekend that went something like this...
Me: "Charlie. If we're going to get to the zoo at a reasonable hour, we should probably get the kids packed and in to the car. Why don't you head up getting the triplet's shoes on and load them in to their carseats while I change the baby's diaper?"
Charlie: "Sounds good."
I walk in to the nursery and am greeted by every single linen that we own, strewn across the floor. There is an entire sleeve of diapers - out of their sleeve - across the ground along with all of Henry's burp cloths and all the tissues from a box of Kleenex. My blood is instantly boiling. Charlie was just in the nursery with the triplets. Did he not notice that things were ... how to say ... a little out of place?
I change the baby and stepping over the mess, walk to the front door where I am greeted by my happy and smiling husband.
Me: "So, uh, what the berry happened in the nursery? Did you not see all the berrying stuff all over the berrying ground? It's like a berrying bomb went off in there!"
Charlie: "Jen, I don't look at that stuff because if I do, it will drive me nuts."
Me: "What do you mean you don't look at it? How the berry can you not look at it? I'd much rather have you be 1/2 nuts and me be 1/2 nuts than have me be 100% BERRYING nuts."
Charlie: "We need to get out of the house to get to the zoo. It will be dealt with later."
Jen: "It will be dealt with later? By whom? The berrying cleanup fairy? Everybody needs a berrying cleanup fairy. I could use one for sure! Maybe two. Heck, I'd like a berrying bucket load of berrying cleanup fairies!! What the berrying BERRY. You know who I am?? I AM THE BERRYING CLEANUP FAIRY. The one that is incapable of leaving the berrying house when it looks like a big old berrying bomb went the berry off."
Now before anyone gets the wrong idea that my husband doesn't contribute to cleaning up our house, that is simply not the case. He does a remarkable job of helping to insure order. But without question, he does not wage the same
I'm not sure if this is a woman thing, or what. But I truly envy his ability to look the other way.
You know what else I envy?
His ability to never swear.
I don't know how the berry he does it.