Oh crud

It was bound to happen sooner or later.

Ever since Laney's arrival I've done my best to curtail the usage of the oh so eloquent expletives that occasionally work their way into my vocabulary in relaxed situations. The 'big' words were the easiest to cut back on as those only made a very rare appearance as it was. It's the little words which you don't really think of as being excessive that are the toughest to cut cold turkey. Things like a relatively mild "oh crap" suddenly seem like a bad example to my little girl, especially coming from her father.

The closest acceptable substitute I could come up with for the phrase above (and I mean acceptable for both parties, Laney and myself) was "oh crud." I still only rarely use it, but I didn't feel it would be as bad if it happened to slip in her presence. That was until yesterday though.

Laney and I were playing tennis on the Wii. She quickly grew bored with it though and after only a couple points dropped the controller and was off to play with other toys or books in the room. I finished out the game on my own (Laney had been on my team as we played against the computer) and lost when I hit the ball out of bounds on an easy put-away shot. "Oh crud." I said. Laney kept right on playing with her toys seemingly oblivious to what I was doing.

I decided to play one more game on my own and again lost on the final point (this time not due to my own error so I wasn't frustrated.) "Oh crud." Laney said. It wasn't just that she heard me and remembered the word. She remembered the context in which it was used in spite of the fact that she was only marginally paying attention. And of course, Holly happened to walk into the room at the EXACT moment Laney said that. Laney was of course told never to say that again, but daddy was the one who was really in trouble.

I'm not naive. I don't expect my little girl to live an entirely sheltered life. With all the images and messages she'll be exposed to in today's world it's foolish to think it could somehow be otherwise. But I want to try set as good an example as I possibly can so that when I try to guide her with my own advice the words will carry more weight. I'm still going to slip-up every now and then (not only in this area, but in others) but hopefully she'll see the example I want her to see.


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