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Two Words I Can’t Stop Saying

September 21, 2009

A couple of years ago, I had an epiphany.  Saying hurry up does not in fact make a child move faster.  Neither does, quickly please, hurry-hurry, or another favorite…come on!  I wouldn’t be surprised if statistics show this actually slows a child down.

As I said, I discovered this two years or more ago.  Wow, I thought.  This really doesn’t help.  In fact, it just annoys the kids and might even raise my blood pressure.  I’m going to have to stop saying this all the time.  Something like, ‘please be in the car in two minutes’ would be much more effective. 

Fortunately, our life has slowed considerably down from our chaotic, over-filled days.  Yet, I continue with the ‘hurry hurry’ on a regular basis.  Just yesterday, we were leaving for a doctor appointment, and I must have said it nineteen times.

Why do I keep saying this when I know it doesn’t help?  Frustration, perhaps.  Inability to properly express myself? Lack of sufficient preparation the night before? Maybe it’s just plain old Mommy brain! 

I’m reminded of something my step-dad Randy used to say to me when I was a sixteen year old new driver, backing down our long driveway in my little Pinto.  “Have fun and be careful!”  He would call out.  And without fail, I would respond with a wicked grin, “Can’t do both!”   Yeah I know what a horrible brat I was.  I can still see him shaking his head, hand on forehead, poor guy.

Back to today, or yesterday.  The hurry up thing.  Maybe I am being paid back for all the grief I gave my parents.  Or maybe, (and this sounds a whole lot better) I am just part of a beautiful group of people called parents, who, in spite themselves, just can’t stop saying things they know don’t help. 

Things like…Hurry up!  Be careful!  Drive safe!  Am I just being cynical or does anyone actually drive safer because someone told them to?  I don’t know, but I still say it to my hubby every morning, just in case.

What pointless things do you find yourself saying?  Tell me, really.  I need to know I’m not alone.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. mamala permalink
    September 22, 2009 2:27 pm

    I just know that ‘be careful’ is the most universal, useless, parental directive around. I also know that until I became an adult (with my eye on the end of my life as it quickly advanced in my direction) did I really become careful.
    I have become quite careful not to die and leave my loved ones behind, immobilized by their grief. I’ve become cognitive of the reality of the consequences of picking up hitch hikers, or going with a hippie to a second location.
    Sadly, or maybe happily, although I had always promised the parents, “Yes, yes, I will be soooo careful”, I wasn’t, and yet, I’ve lived to tell. At that point of your life you feel invincible, super-hero-ish, and way smarter than those fools whose early demise had made it into the evening paper.
    So I’ve said all of that to say this:
    I will continue to urge, “Be careful,” to any and everyone leaving me even briefly. And I will continue to expect that the very weight of those words will wrap a thin protective shell around them until they come back to me.

  2. turtlemomma permalink
    September 22, 2009 6:59 pm

    Wow, you two beautiful women are so right. Tonight as I try and take some deep breaths and remember this too shall pass (my almost 12 yr old and his rude behavior), I am encouraged to keep wishing him “be careful” and think about how often I nag ” Hurry up” or nag anything really.
    My friend told me about a book she was reading: A new kid by Friday. One of the rules in the book is to only say things once. That teaches the kids to listen the first time, ensures that you arent nagging them to death, or repeating yourself when they say, HUH?
    Love your new banner.

  3. September 24, 2009 4:04 am

    “I’m busy”, “not right now”, “I’ll think about it”

    I don’t like saying these to my children because it communicates that I’m not available to them. Its sometimes hard to be available to each child (I’ve got 5). So, I’ll give them the answer that holds them off for a bit. Oftentimes I forget to go back and address the questions, and they know that. Atleast the older ones call me out on it. I’m trying to be available to my children because I’m home with them for a reason: I want to be involved in their lives!

    Focusing on them instead of outside activities, the computer, and other distractions is a challenge some days but prayer usually sets me on the right track!

  4. angelamills permalink*
    September 24, 2009 5:47 am

    Mom- I think I’d be pretty sad if you didn’t say be careful!

    Joy- I read about that book, I’d like to read it but I would be ashamed to buy it….I don’t really want a new kid 🙂

    Brenda- Such a nice and needed reminder. My thing is “in a minute.” or “hold on.” Which is really just another way of saying, “I’m busy!” I think all moms need to say that less!

  5. October 7, 2009 6:27 am

    I think the only answer is duct tape. I know I could use it!


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