‘I’m not going to say that word’

I am by no means a perfect mother, nowhere near it and have never claimed to be. I may have let a few curse words slip a time or two in front of the girls. Probably after a stumped toe or an accidental spill while cooking. Maybe even after just one more teeny tiny thing happens on top of the 20 other teeny tiny things that happened that day. It does not happen very often, but as most of you know, it does not take much with kids. They are little sponges and, of course, they are always going to remember your worst moments but cannot remember you telling them to brush their teeth or take the trash out for the 500th time in the last hour.  

So, I cannot say I was surprised when my second born almost let one slip. Almost, being the keyword here. We were playing catch on my mother’s porch. It had been raining off and on the last couple of days, so it was pretty muddy outside. I made a bad throw, and the ball flew off the side of the porch. Ashton looked down disappointingly and said, “I’m not going to say that word.” 

We all know a word or two she was probably thinking. 

Once again, the lesson for today is for me and that lesson is: knowing when to keep my mouth shut. 

Ashton was quite admirable in this moment. She may have been thinking a bad word and she may have really wanted to say it, but she knew it was wrong and she bit her tongue.  

The Bible says we should practice this. Proverbs 13: 3 says, “Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.” It is a recurring theme in the book of Proverbs actually. 

This is something I know I need to be more diligent about, not only when it comes to saying curse words, but talking when I am angry, or when I am gossiping, when I am being critical and especially when I should be listening instead.  

From now on I will make it a personal goal to keep my mouth shut. I will just think to myself, “I’m not going to say that word.” I will be silent and still and by doing so, give God permission to fight that battle for me.

(Paige Nash is a wife, mother and journalist for The Webster Parish Journal.)

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