I Dropped The “F”Bomb

I don’t know why, but for some reason the memory of dropping an “F” bomb in front of Mom is something I’ll never forget. I think I was about 29 years old, and while it was not unusual for cuss words in our family gatherings…most of those consisted mostly of damn and shit.

Let me start at the beginning though before where my story picks up in 1983.

Me and my brothers were brought up Baptist at young ages and then Church of Christ for straight years. Anyone that knows COC…knows how strict they were, in fact I don’t remember ever using a single curse word during the time I went to a Church of Christ church. That ended in 1970, but I guess some of the virtues of attending church regularly curtailed my penchant for obscene language.

Then I joined the Navy in 1973 and of course there’s a reason for the phrase, “curse like a sailor”. And so from the moment I stepped off the plane in Memphis, TN and coming home from Boot Camp…cursing in front of my Mom started. The first time was innocent enough and really not that bad of a word. My younger brother knocked my white hat (Navy crackerjack hat) off my BALD head and when he did that I yelled at him to “leave my damn hat alone”. Immediately my brothers said, “Hmmmm MOM, Wally cussed”. My Mom calmly told my brothers to leave me alone and thus was the beginning of “mild” cursing around my Mom. But I never said anything more than damn or shit. I respect (respected) my Mom too much for any really obscene language.

Then came 1983… It was not a good “girlfriend” year for me. This girl at the time was the love of my life and yet we broke up often. I didn’t want to marry, and she did. She acted out and I didn’t. It was total opposites, yet we always found a way to get back together. This was one of those breakup times.

So when I wanted to relax and get out of town (Blytheville), I would go to my Mom’s in Searcy, AR. There I didn’t know anyone, I could relax and being a momma’s boy, I was comfortable. But having an alcoholic father, I rarely drank in front of my Mom, in fact, I had never drank at all at her house, it was respect for her. But this time, I was pretty down and I walked into her house with a six pack of beer.

Mom never pried into our personal lives. In fact, she was never anything but supportive. If we wanted to talk, we would but she would never ask questions or pry. This particular night, we were in the living room and watching TV, I decided to “crack” open a beer or two, so I went and got a beer and then sat back down.

I began to spill my guts about this girl. I don’t even remember exactly what I was saying except that Mom was listening intently while I just rambled on and on. I went got another beer, sat back down and picked up where I left off. At one point, I remember telling my Mom, “I have no idea what (girl) was fucking thinking”.

I thought to myself immediately…what did I just say in front of my Mom? I just said the word, “FUCKING”. Mom never flinched, she never said a word, it was as if the word “FUCKING” was just another adjective in my little diatribe. When I realized what I had said, and how embarrassed I was, and how disrespectful I was being to Mom…I got up, took my beer into the kitchen, poured what was left into the sink and took the other four beers out of the refrigerator and put them in my suitcase to take home.

Mom never said a word. She heard me. I heard me. I never again dropped an “F” bomb in front her. Yes, she knew her son’s were not saints, or well not saints to everyone else, but we were saints to her. I’m sure if she were alive today, and I brought this incident up to her…she would just laugh about it. I miss her.

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