Spelling Lessons

“That was really stupid.” I said out loud as I was reading over something I had written down incorrectly.

“We don’t say that word, Mom,” my son, Jeremy, quickly informed me as his little daughter was playing on the floor with her dollhouse.

That was really obtuse.” I quickly rephrased my words as I dredged up a vocabulary word from my high school days.

“Thanks, Mom, now she’s going to be telling people that they are O-B-T-U-S-E”, he spelled.

“S-O-R-R-Y” I mischievously spelled back to him and then thought better of it because that is probably one word that doesn’t get used enough anymore.

Jeremy seems to have taken a sudden interest in spelling lately. For example, I hear him saying such things as: “I H-A-T-E it when that happens”, “In this game you have to K-I-L-L the monsters with lasers” and “This D-U-M-B thing isn’t working!”

But what I want to know is when did this metamorphosis occur? What happened to the little boy who used to terrorize his older sisters without firing off a single spelled word? How often did I hear one of his sisters say, “Mom, He called me an idiot again!”

It’s really not so difficult to figure out this mysterious change. It began when Jeremy married his college sweetheart, Katie, and then a couple of years later I watched as my son carried his new baby girl, Tessa, out of the delivery room

When Tessa came into the world, at that moment everything changed. It is beautiful to behold the transformation in another person, especially our own children.

As Jeremy’s mother, it was a little like a flashback to the time when he was born. The change happens because of an overwhelming love that wants to protect such a precious little one from the evils in the world. Suddenly, everything we say or do is evaluated in light of the effect it has or might have on the child.

For our family this way of thinking is a standard that has been passed down by our ancestors for who knows how many generations. There are several reasons for it. The first one is that watching our words is a biblical commandment. “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord your God in vain”. This means not to misuse the name of God. His name should only be said in reverence and awe and never used as an expletive or curse, nor should it be dropped as a casual word into our sentences. There is also the instruction, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” There is a children's song that very simply explains this way of thinking:

        “Oh be careful little *mouth what you *say.
        Oh be careful little *mouth what you *say.
        For the Father up above, is looking down in love,
        So be careful little mouth what you say”.

        Other Verses:
          * ears what you hear
          * eyes what you see
          * feet where you go
To speak or to spell, is that the question? Perhaps if we would strive to say only things that are beneficial, we wouldn’t have to spell. Besides, grandchildren are very smart these days and it’s only a matter of time until I hear my little granddaughter say, “Daddy, this D-U-M-B thing isn’t working”.

~ Pamela Perry Blaine ~
© April 11, 2008

About Pamela:  She enjoys writing, music, and country living.  She writes"Pam's Corner" for the local newspaper and many of her writings have been published on the internet as well as in several books.

Pam says, "I have loved music and writing ever since I can remember. I play piano at church and I'm an avid reader. One of my goals is to be able to write for my children and grandchildren so special memories will not be forgotten."  She has a CD entitled "I'll Walk You Home".  If you would like one, they are available by freewill donation.  More information as well as a clip from the CD is on her website at http://blaines.us/PamyPlace.htm

[ By: Pamela Perry Blaine, Copyright © 2008 (pamyblaine@blaines.us) -- submitted by: Pamela Blaine ]


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