I Swear

arm around my shoulder Lord“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” Ephesians 4:29
Today probably is not the best day to blog… me being in a “mood” and all… but maybe actually since I am tackling the topic of swearing this is the perfect day to do such a thing. Mwuahahahahahaha… yeah it’s one of those days when I cannot shake that feeling of wanting to punch something… call it PMS …call it what you will… but if you tell me to “just change your attitude” or “turn that frown upside down” I will probably, as I said above, punch you. Yeah I know… not very Catholic… but you have been warned. Just saying.
The husband just did a very noble and wonderfully brave thing… handed me, his lovely wife, a coffee. Ah. Yes… thank you. I can squeeze out a smile for that.
I don’t remember… have I told you the story of how it took me three years to stop, well, er… decrease my use of profanity immensely? Yeah. I was a Boston Meter Maid for over 6 years back in the 1990’s and yes I was that obnoxious, foul-mouthed sarcastic Beee-otch. And yes I did probably give you that ticket, and no I don’t care the reason you parked like an idiot… haha. Sorry. I could write a whole book on my escapades … oh wait.. I did. Anyway… so yeah for over 6 years I was thrust into a life where I was sworn at on a daily basis… it was the norm to be called every horrific name in the book. We were supposed to “take it” and “let it roll off our backs.” Yeah. Riiight. I became quick-witted (snappy answers to stupid questions) and vulgarity was one of my many talents. Yes I was good at it.
Not sure when it dawned on me to STOP this ….wait … I remember now! I was living in Dorchester, Massachusetts over by Upham’s Corner-ish area (yes I lived near there!) and one afternoon I heard some young man outside my kitchen window swearing up a storm like it was nobody’s business. I thought, “Man he sounds like an ignorant fool!”… at that moment it dawned on me… I do that. I sound like that. Wow. Epiphany. Also this was around the time (the early 2000’s) when my little boys (who are not so little now, they are taller than me!) were small and I thought it was not such a good idea to drop the F bomb every other word around impressionable minds … so I TRIED really hard to actively stop swearing … and yes it took about three years.
Yes… I do still swear on occasion. I am not perfect … the old me rears her ugly head and out it comes … as if I have no control over her. Lord, hand over my mouth please for I cannot do this alone! So I try to use other words when I get upset and/or angry. The one I find the most satisfying is “Crap.” Yeah I know… not that much better than his brother the “sh” word… but it is better. And it reminds me of one of my favorite and misunderstood super heroes Hellboy.

Hellboy craphellboy_09_01_low

And yes Hellboy is Catholic.

A demon raised Catholic, trying to do good deeds… but  persecuted and misunderstood. Love him.
So yeah I try to use other words… TRY. And I pray. Definitely need to pray to curb my tongue.
But back to swearing… as you probably have seen and heard… especially if you work in a place like I do (a high school) where swearing is unfortunately the “norm” … swearing has not decreased… it has increased substantially. It is as if people need to UP the shock value on everything they do. Because of this mentality it is now “okay” to swear and it is even encouraged in some circles. I can no longer watch rated R comedies any more… ugh!

I remember arguing with my oldest son about swearing several years ago. (It was like banging my head against the wall hahaha). He said that it, profanity, was okay now and that it was not a bad thing anymore because it had become the norm. Swear words lost their stigma. I had to try to get him to understand that even though it seems to be normal now to throw the f bomb into every other sentence … using it as a verb, noun and an adjective, it is not a good thing at all… it is still a very BAD thing. It is taking the Lord’s name in vain (Exodus 20:7). I think I was talking on deaf ears… he is in his twenties and it is cool in his circles to swear … ugh. More prayer.

lie doesn't become truth
There was a woman I worked with years ago who LOVED to express her distress by saying, “Jesus Christ!”… and not in a good way… and she said it all the time! It bothered me… A LOT… I finally had it and told her it disturbed me. Probably the best way to deal with that expletive is to say, “Blessed be His name,” right after someone says it. That usually takes people back and makes them think and see that saying His name in a negative way is bothersome. WE as Christians need to make an effort to stop this denigration of our language. We need to bring the light of Christ to others and we need to TELL them when their language is offensive. Yeah it’s hard… and it makes us “not cool.” Oh well. DO it anyway! Do it anyway. Dagnabit …
So as I went through this day… trying not to let my mood influence my tongue (I mostly kept my mouth shut… haha) I must say I did a pretty good job… and I must say… that writing this down has kind of (kind of) brought me out of my “bad” mood. Joy.
“The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil. Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate.” Proverbs 8:13

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