Wildflowers for Jade: I'm a PG-13 Parent

Saturday, September 5, 2015

I'm a PG-13 Parent

I started cursing when Jaden’s dad left. I’m not saying I never cursed before, but the divorce proceedings brought out an unrestrained, almost talented stream of cursing and epithets. I don’t know about you, but I’m reminded of Clark W. Griswold’s epic Christmas speech.

I am not that talented.
Most often I would save this angst for the trips to and from my son’s therapies. Nashville traffic, after all, is the perfect sounding board for projecting anger. Instead of taking it out on him or anything in our personal lives, I saved it for the asshole who cut me off and made me slam on the breaks.
Sometimes Jaden would say, with awesome autistic logic, “You know they can’t hear you, right?”
Well duh. That’s kind of what makes it perfect. Not that I’ve never told off someone in person who needed the telling. I am, after all, an autism parent.

Some time ago I read one mother’s account of her “worst parenting moment ever.” It was a cute little story where she had accidently blurted out “read ‘em and weep, bitches!” while her angels looked on in open-mouthed horror.
“That’s your worst parenting moment?!” I yelled at the computer screen. Because this was part of my therapeutic M.O..
Keep up.
Either she was lying or she’s the holy mother’s twin. Either way, she thought her “worst” parenting moment so soul-cringing that she posted it for all the world to see and have some lolz.
My worst parenting moments I’m not likely to write up and glorify, but instead crawl cringing on my knees to beg my son’s forgiveness.
“It’s okay,” he’d tell me in soothing tones. “We all make mistakes. Remember when I said I hated you because I was mad? But you know I didn’t mean it. We all say stuff we don’t mean when we’re mad. I know that.”
Because he has the wisdom of Buddha, and the temper of Zeus.
I think of raising a child as one big experiment. The difference, I think, between raising a down-to-earth human or causing a personality complex is admitting your mistakes, your humanity, and asking for forgiveness. And offering a just amount of understanding and forgiveness in return. Some parents never say they’re sorry. To them it would be weakness to admit they fucked up as a parent. It would undermine their authority.
I can be human and a parent at the same time. To me, that’s the only way. My son needs no delusions of me as a God figure.
“What about God?” someone might ask. Oh right, the whole nary takingeth the Lord’s nameth in vain clause.
I doubt you want to hear my theological musings at this point because that would take us well into the night, and require a copious amount of coffee and personal trust.
But I find it funny that my “god dammit” would offend people who wrap themselves up in the name Christian while, I don’t know, cutting off a mother and her child in traffic (Honk if you love Jesus!) Or calling someone “retarded”. Or telling their kids that they are lucky they’re healthy and whole and not like them. Or slurring people who want to live differently in peace, or gossiping, or malice of any kind, all while wearing the name of Christ.
I’m pretty sure that’s the real definition of taking the Lord’s name in vain.
But hey, none of us are perfect. I forgive you.
My own little angel has a potty mouth too. I tell him to reserve it for my company only, but he slips up sometimes. I don’t really give a damn. I’m raising him to be a man, not a perpetual child.
His mouth better run though, if I hear the “r” word, a racial slur, or malicious gossiping or insults come out of it. I do have standards.

No comments:

Post a Comment