A Dirty Word And A Bag Of Tricks

We all do it, especially in the morning—privately and in the bathroom. Why am I writing about this? Actually, I’m not. It’s merely a prelude to one of my coping mechanisms, potty jokes, a proclivity keeping me like the South Park characters perpetually in fourth grade. But, to go off on a brief tangent—something I often do—shit (as in the word itself) happens to be my favorite curse word in the English language.

With just four letters you can convey an emotional range from happiness to anger to
wonder and abject misery, all by your tone of voice. I can’t think of another term that has such a vast range. In addition, there are so many offshoots like doggy doo or crapola or brown tracks on your underwear. Yes, shit is versatile. No shit about it!

When I was a kid, I didn’t have too many outlets in my abusive household. Cursing, however, became a staple I could do in the privacy of the bathroom, a friend’s home, or silently when the mood struck. I might not have been able to strike back at tyrants twice my size, but I could do it in my head, as in “You shitty stinkin’ asshole!”

During one of my hospitalization, we had to write activities for those days when we
were particularly out of sorts, you know feeling shitty. While cursing, along with potty jokes, will always win my “Razzie,” I also penciled a few others for my bag of tricks. I know there are folks who view four-lettered words as taboo, so in the interest of trying to be helpful I listed getting out of my house near the top. Even when it takes more strength than I think I possess, going for walks, to the library, or to a clubhouse for people with MI (we are fortunate to have one in this city) sprinkles sugar over the misery I’m feeling. There is something about the change of scenery, watching others, or merely the sky that can take me out of my personal sinkhole or stinkhole. Then there’s the usual staple
of exercise, music, petting a cat, etc. … so whatever works for you is worth pursuing, and that’s no shit.


About waywardweed

I am a consumer and parent of two sons, one with a mental illness and the other a third-year law student.
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