Parenting is like a yoyo. Ups and downs. And sometimes you just want to chuck the yoyo through the window. Don’t get me wrong, my little boys are angels and I love them more than anything, even sex, although sometimes the latter is necessary to be able to handle the former.
As a single parent with in-person kid responsibilities half my life, there are times when I’ll have my little guys for days on end, without a ton of adult interaction. In those circumstances my vocabulary is shortened as I need to leave out plenty of key words and phrases that I normally dish out like soup at the soup kitchen.
For example, I eliminate the f-bomb when I have my kids. This is not always easy. Many times they seem to be purposely doing things to get me to say it. But I refrain and then when I drop the boys off with their mom, I inevitably find somebody over 17 to swear at.
17+ year old: “Welcome to Jimmy Johns, what can I make for you?”
Me: “Yeah, give me a fucking number ten with cheese.”
Or a random stranger will make eye contact, probably because I’m smiling ear to ear being free of the rugrats after four straight days and they will say hello. I will respond, “Fuck yeah hello.”
I might not have this problem if I could say what I want to say around my kids all the time without regard to them repeating any of it, being scarred for life, taking offense, or telling their mother.
Take a typical situation around the house. Will and Drew are being normal brothers and pushing each other’s buttons. They engage in the world famous banter that results in non stop harassment such as Will saying “DrewPoo” and Drew saying “stop” and Will saying “DrewPoo” and Drew saying “stop” and Will saying “DrewPoo” and Drew saying “stop” and this goes on about a dozen times with increasingly louder cadence before I say in a calm voice, “kids, please knock it off.”
Ideally, I could say what I was thinking which was a bellowing, “Would you two shut the fuck up? Geezus, you can be such irritating little assholes!”
Another good example. “Hey guys, go get ready for bed.” They are supposed to get in jammies, brush teeth, feed the fish and get in bed. This should take five minutes or so. Fifteen minutes later, one kid is running around in his underwear, the other is fully clothed and nobody has brushed his teeth. I remind them to please settle down and just get ready for bed. Then there is a loud thump in the bathroom with one kid laughing and one kid whining while they wrestle for sink space. I say, “Can one of you feed the fish and put on jammies while the other brushes instead of both trying to brush at the exact same time?”
If only I could say what I want.
“Hey guys, get ready for bed.” Fifteen minutes later one kid is running around in his underwear, the other is fully clothed and nobody has brushed his teeth. I remind them to settle down and get ready for bed by saying “Settle the fuck down, do your shit and get in the fucking bed!” Then there is a loud thump with one kid laughing and one kid whining while they battle for sink space. I say, “I am going to kick your little asses if you don’t get your act together! Leave each other the fuck alone and one of you brush while the other feeds the fish before I decide to have late night sushi.”
And then of course I’d tuck them in and tell them how much I love them. Little fuckers.