Before I had a kid, I thought children cursing was the funniest thing in the world.
It’s so wrong and so cute at the same time.
And the fact that you’re not supposed to say them only makes them that much more special and fun for kids to say so tiny voices gleefully yelling out profanities…hilarious in its absurdity.
So here I am today, reaping the effects of my childless karma as you have very recently dropped your first forbidden word on me.
That it’s one of my most used (and favorite) phrases was not lost on me as I stood there processing what you had just said.
The scenario as it played out:
Sophie playing in the living room (mumbling): I can’t do this.
Mommy: Can’t do what, honey?
Sophie ignoring Mommy (mumbling, more intensely): Hmmph! Why can’t I do this?
Mommy goes back to making coffee.
Sophie (mumbling but loud enough for Mommy to hear): Goddammit!
Believe me when I say that this was definitely not my proudest parenting moment as the intonation and inflection of your voice sounded EXACTLY like mine in a stressed moment in traffic or that one time I stepped in dog shit (my other favorite curse word.)
Look, if you’re reading this, chances are you have heard every single bad word out there and are in fact, experimenting with them and probably have a favorite one yourself.
Or you’re the opposite of me and never let a curse word cross your lips (very ladylike, my dear!).
I never really heard my parents curse growing up but once I hit the 6th grade, I remember “asshole” and “shit” being thrown around even when we didn’t know how to properly use them and look at me today…sometimes I curse like a sailor but after this little incident, I definitely censor myself around certain company (old people and conservatives included).
So here’s how I handled it…instead of telling you never to say it, I apologized and told you that it was a “mommy word” that should never be used in front of you and that babies and little kids are not allowed to use them yet.
Because in this age of the Internet, there’s no point in hiding anything from you.
It’s all a mouse/phone/tablet click away so we’ll just discuss anything and everything (dear lord!) as it happens.
Instead, we found some proper “Sophie words” that would express the same exact feeling of anger and frustration appropriate for a toddler.
We settled on “Oh man!” and “Ah, nuts!” which you found to be hilarious as did I and in fact, this incident has become something of an inside joke with us because when you get frustrated now, you stop and say, “Mommy, we don’t use “mommy words”, we use “Sophie words” and we both yell, “AH, NUTS!!!”
Just as funny as the real thing.
I love you, dear Sophie.
Mommy is not perfect but she promises to always be honest with you.
Here you are quickly and impatiently climbing behind this slow poke up to the slide.
Breathe, be calm and please remember your “Sophie words.”