Filters

3 Apr

Swearing is becoming quite popular in our house. While this is nothing new for Sarah and Stephanie, it’s surprising now that Mary’s favorite expletive is no longer “Oh brother!” I do miss her old phrase, but there is something satisfying about tucking her into bed, her neck cracking as she lies down, and having her tell it like it is. When the world has handed her such a burden in life, a bit of profanity only seems appropriate. Of course, once settled into bed, she’ll talk of those who are suffering worse than she. Is that enough guilt for you, world?

Although we lose clean water and social approval, it can be gratifying when a filter goes out. Despite an ability to wakeup with the impression that each day is a new opportunity, a new beginning, there is something to be said for the weeks, months, and years that are slowly piling behind the filters of our histories. We try to ignore the backup, try to remain pleasant despite conflicting orders from our emotions and impending breakdown. This is why we go to movies and watch reality shows, waiting for someone else’s filter to break so ours don’t have to. Aristotle defined it as catharsis, an opportunity to reflect on the characters’ emotional breakdowns on stage so that we won’t have to go home and have them ourselves.

In this house, however, we are the ones putting on the show. Now, I am not asking for a game of dodge ball with the dinner glasses, but it’s possible that a little swearing is just what this house needed.  It is a reminder that maybe we should look underneath a fountain from time to time, take note of all the dirt it has collected over the years in order to spurt out clear water on the other side. Maybe Connor’s tantrums and Mary’s expletives are a bit of spring cleaning. Maybe I can chuckle every time Sarah passes my door with a string of expletives in toe. But then again, at five in the morning, maybe not.

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One Response to “Filters”

  1. dbfitts April 4, 2012 at 9:35 pm #

    How sanguine to think that filters even exist today. The water flowing out of today’s fountain is not filtered, it oozes cynicism and selfish motivation. What you are describing in your house is genuine, lacking the pretense that makes filters necessary.

    Your blog rocks, keep it up

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