I got a little more than grease with my meal though...
It was one of those 2 lane drive-thru's where it's really easy to get confused on when you're supposed to go. I guess you throw some early morning grumpiness into the mix and you get what I got that morning.
One of the early morning coffee seekers got done with her order at the same time as the girl in the other drive-thru line, so they both took off for the payment window and just about had themselves a fender bender.
Enter horn blowing and a very foul four letter word from one of the drivers. She didn't just say it once. She SCREAMED it at least 10 times to the other driver. It's a word that would never accidentally slip from my mouth and one I definitely did not want my child to hear.
Thank God, she didn't repeat it even though I know she heard it. The girl finally drove off and when I got up to pay for my order the little cashier guy was just'a laughing and saying, "McDonald's gone wild!"
Lawd have mercy but that got my blood boiling.
It flashed me back to those hellish middle school days where you suddenly go from the innocence of learning multiplication and Friday Funday parties to dealing with hormonal pre-teens who cuss and fight and bully.
And I thought...how do I protect my sweet, innocent baby girl from people who have become so depraved from morality?
Sadly the only answer I could come up with was....I can't.
I can't censor bad words and risque behavior like they do on t.v. I can't stop her from growing up and facing the harsh realities of the real world. It's just not possible.
It might be in the McDonald's drive-thru line or at the park or mall...but there will be moments in her life that I can't completely shield her from. It's heartbreaking and unfair; it's messed up that people that don't deserve to be in the same vicinity of my sweet baby girl will introduce their immorality into her life; but it's a harsh reality that each and every decent parent out there will have to face.
So what do we do?
Love them unconditionally. Show them what a functional family looks like. Dress them modestly but still allow them to be themselves. Reprimand them when they do wrong but hug them afterwords and remind them that they are still loved regardless.
Teach them that while there are bad things and bad people in this world, it's their job to be the good. To not be judgmental but to show the bad people around them that being the good guy is far more rewarding.
The years we have with our children are so important. It's our job as parents to mold them into good human beings. It's a daunting task; but it's the one you accept when you make the decision to bring them into the world.
And for goodness sake, let's teach our kids to put a filter on their mouths, because everything they say and do affects far more people than just them.
As Plato says, "Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something."