Now that I am older and more settled in my life, I truly appreciate the way my parents raised me. Sometimes things seemed over the top when I would remember how my parents taught me and I remember thinking, “Hello Mr. and Mrs. Conservative! A little much ya think?!” But now that I’m older, now that I’m a parent, now that I know how I want to live my life…I’m so grateful for them.

But. Still.

There are some silly things that I can’t help but think my family members probably thought my parents were nut jobs for. As a matter of fact, I know my family thought my parents were nut jobs for it.

When my mom first learned who Jesus Christ was (is?), her life and the way she lived it changed drastically almost immediately. There were certain habits that she changed. Certain habits that family members were accustomed to habit-ing with her. And when she willingly gave those habits up cold turkey, hers and my dad’s family (my dad included, he joined my mom in her “cultish ways” approx. a year later) had a family meeting about her. Surely! She joined a cult! Because who changes the negative habits in their life to better themselves without it involving a CULT?!? (And don’t you call me Shirley!). But no. No cult involved. Just a simple desire to clean up her life and live it in a way that would be pleasing to her Creator. No harm in that. But to this day, there are a few things we laugh about.

Like fart, for instance. Not the act of passing gas, don’t misunderstand. I mean the actual word “fart’. We were allowed to pass gas just like all the heathens of the world, we just had to call it something different. Like “boop”. Yes, we called farting booping. Like pooping, with an upside down ‘p’. To this day she can not explain to me where it came from. And she laughs that we ever called it that. She has joined my brother and I and now calls it farting, like a regular person. I do have to say though, my friend from middle school had a neighbor that called it “boombox”. Like, “Who boomboxed?!”

I know, right?!?!

Also, crap. I was not allowed to say crap. I can remember once tattling on my neighbor, David Simpson, because he said crap. How.Embarassing. How was I supposed to know that crap was just off-limits to me and not the rest of the world?! Even my mom didn’t really know what to do when I tattled because, well, IT’S CRAP FOR GOODNESS SAKES! I got over it though, and instead of using crap I found a substitute word (in true Christian fashion)…crud. But mom liked that even less than crap. And due to a glorious slip up of dear ol’ Dad, crap was finally within my grasp (please disregard the fact that you grasp with your hands, and speak with your mouth. I am indeed aware of this).

Speaking of Simpson (all the way at the top of the last paragraph, for reference) I was not allowed to watch the Simpsons. I can understand this to a certain degree. Inappropriate behavior in the way of constant burping and farting, negative name calling, etc. But so much of that would have been lost on my naive little brain back then, at least I think so. Which is okay, because the humor of it can be appreciated much more now that I’m older. Not that I ever watch it anymore….so much to do, so little time and all that jazz.

This next example didn’t affect me at all, but we laugh about it pretty frequently these days. He-Man, the cartoon. One day my brother was allowed to watch it, and shortly after my mom’s transformation, he was not. Because dontcha-know, POWER comes from JESUS and NOT from some SWORD. Plus, SKULLS. Also, Smurfs.

So anyways, that’s a good bit of examples of the sheltered childhood that I lived. But there were so many other things that I rightfully was not exposed to. I know how royally I messed up my life despite my parents conservatism and I am sure without their discretion things could have been much worse. I’m thankful for the sacrifices my parents made in order to place me in a group of influential people (MAFGCS, NLCS, LCo’M). I may have had to find my own way, rediscover what faith is, rediscover who God is and His place in my life (1st). But it was because of the foundation you built my life on that I was even able to find my way.

So thanks for the bricks and mortar. Thanks for the flashlight, Mom and Dad, the batteries are still kickin’. [insert something here about not hiding my little light under a bushel, Satan not blowing it out, and all that jazz]