I always cringe a little when I hear my middle child running down the stairs with her younger brother following behind, in hot pursuit, crying out“ no, Zoe… please don’t tell mama …please, I didn’t mean it.”
My middle child is our lady of justice. If you wrong her in any way – she immediately demands that the accused be swiftly brought to justice. And usually, no matter what the crime, she expects the perp to get the chair.
So as she leaped down the last three steps with her brother running closely behind her …… I could see the glimmer in her eyes. “Mama …mama – guess what Neill did?” Behind her stood her brother with tears streaming down his face “I didn’t mean it – I’m sorry”, he begged for his life.
Knowing that our lady of justice considers even the slightest indiscretion to be a crime punishable by death, I wasn’t too worried. In fact, in years past, I would have even gone so far as to not look up and ignore her rants. However, time has taught me that if I don’t at least appear to inflict a harsh penalty onto the accused – lady justice will simply take matters into her own hands and inflict her own form of cruel and unusual punishment.
And believe me – my middle child – could care less about civil rights – her form of retribution puts Sadam to shame. For instance, if you dare to touch her Barbie, without having executed the appropriate waivers and releases, she will chop off your hand and ask questions later. Innocent until proven guilty is not a legal principle she readily embraces.
What’s the matter – what happened, I said, trying to act as incensed as she was – in an effort to save Neill’s hands for yet another day.
You are not going to believe it.
What is it?, I said still trying to appear interested as I wrote out my grocery list.
Neill cried out again – I didn’t know...I’m sorry…don’t tell daddy.
I put the pen down – could it be – that the accused was actually guilty of a real crime. He did seem to protest too much and he was now playing the daddy card – which my children only play when they are guilty as charged.
What is it – what did he do?, this time I inquired with more attention.
She then looked at me triumphantly and said …Neill said the F word.
My son is only five. My mind began to race. Had my baby moved from just that morning watching “Bob the Builder” to this afternoon blurting out the F word?
I took a deep breath and thought for a minute. Before I let my mind go completely into the gutter – I quickly considered that the F word, to those under the age of 8, could be something other than the F word you and I know.
So, I asked the question no parent wants to ask – What is the F word?
And then with a huge smile on her face, hands on her hips looking directly at her brother, she bellowed into his face – He said … stupid!!
I don’t know what made me angrier. That my five year old said the S word – a word that is strictly forbidden in our house - or that I had spent a small fortune on private school tuition so that my 8 year old could tell me that the word stupid starts with an F.
I sentenced both of them to their room.
Neill took it well. Lady justice, however, stomped her feet as she went up the stairs muttering something about having me removed from the bench.
Yeah, I thought…when you figure out what letter the word bench starts with, we’ll talk.Telling Tales
Angel Kane and Becky Andrews live in Wilson County. This is their story (or tale) about their life, families and times that they share. Besides their weekly column Telling Tales Angel and Becky Co Founded Wilson Living Magazine. The idea of developing a magazine for Wilson County first came to Becky and Angel one afternoon while they sat on her back porch watching their children play in the backyard.
They were discussing the outpouring of emails, calls and responses to their column “Telling Tales” and wanted to find a way to capture that community spirit. People were stopping them wherever they went to share their own “tales.” They suddenly realized everyone has a story to tell and many of these stories were amazing. And in that moment, Wilson Living Magazine came to life. Be sure to check out Wilson Living Magazine at www.wilsonlivingmagazine.com
You can contact Angel at firstname.lastname@example.org - You can contact Becky at email@example.com