Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin & Daniel Salmieri is one of our family’s favorite bedtime books.
(Side Note/ Rabbit Trail/ Slightly Straying from Subject…We saw Dragons Love Tacos 2 at Barnes & Noble, but haven’t bought it yet. We are, however, very happy about the sequel and will probably eat at our favorite taco place on a Friday night after buying the book. Why not make an event out of it? 🙂 )
Eva was fairly contemplative during our reading of this book a few evenings ago, more than a story about taco loving dragons calls for, so I wasn’t surprised afterward when she said she needed to talk.
“Sure. What’s on your mind?”
“Well Mom… I feel concerned (yes, my second grader often uses the word concerned) because some kids in my class are using a curse word a lot.”
“What are they saying?”
“You want me to say it out loud?”
“I don’t want you to go around using rude words, but I’m your Mom and right now if I’m going to be able to understand the situation and help you, I need to know what people are saying and when they are using these words”
I figured this was better than listing options and having her choose words she’s heard before.
She took and deep breath and looked around the room. Cute.
“It’s ok Eva. We’re the only ones here”
Big blue eyes met mine, wondering what my response would be.
“The “S” word. Everybody’s saying it to each other when the teacher’s not around.”
Nodding slowly, I asked which “S” word everyone was using, reminding myself to react calmly with facial expressions and words.
She was obviously bracing herself to let the word out and I began to wonder what on earth my child was about to say.
Her look asked whether I was just as shocked as she was that second graders would tell each other to shut up.
I had the self control not to laugh, but couldn’t suppress a smile.
I want my daughter to know it’s safe to talk with me about anything and I’m continually asking God for wisdom in knowing how to react to news she shares. I don’t always get it right, but so far God has graciously given us the kind of relationship where she feels safe talking.
“Shut up is rude, but it’s not really a curse word.”
We talked about circumstances when kids were saying shut up and some alternatives for dealing with those situations. I think it went well. Hopefully she continues sharing with me as she grows.
This parenting issue had a much easier answer than some. Few things have driven me to seek God’s wisdom as often as caring for a child. His word has been an inexhaustible source. I’m also grateful for friends and mentors who are willing to listen to my questions and offer experience and wisdom.
After putting Eva in bed I thought about my own childhood.
I used the actual “S” word once. As a three-year-old. In public. My father was sharing from the pulpit in a church gathering and my sister was playing the piano. As a shy child, it was one of the few times I projected my voice really well. Everyone heard, but I had no idea because I was frustrated after dropping my plastic Fisher Price™ car keys. Another story for another day 🙂
©2017Chrissy Winslow – All Rights Reserved
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