I learned to swear in nursing school. Up until that point I was a fairly calm, well spoken, polite woman.
After that.. not so much.
I didn’t go to college until I was thirty years old. One would have thought my personality was pretty well developed by this age. I was the mother of a nine and seven year old. We would do our homework together at night on the kitchen table.
But somewhere along the line — my Warrior began to come out. Soon I was dealing with nursing instructors, nurse managers, Docs, and the entire fucked up health care system. I began to build shields and draw swords. Before I knew it — I had discovered two of the most useful weapons available to middle aged women — sarcasm and cuss words.
I had found an environment in which my Inner Bitch was not only free to show up — she was damn near a fucking necessity if I were to survive.
And so it went. Because I was God Damned going to survive.
As a Sagittarius, brutal honesty had usually been my go to position to begin with — now it came sprinkled liberally with a four letter word salad. I built a reputation for being harsh, unlady like, and sharp witted — bullies and misogynists looked for easier prey. No one asked me questions they really didn’t want answers to. One of my Docs once said to me, “It’s not that you don’t speak the truth Ann, it’s the way you speak it.”
BAM! Mission accomplished.
Ironically — even though my potty mouth is legend — I have never, not once, gotten in trouble for swearing.
Because I’m an adult. And I can be appropriate. With patients. At professional meetings. With my grandchildren.
People who flip The Inner Bitch switch assume that is Real Ann. They assume the shit that flows freely from my mouth when they piss me off is who I am. Not meant specifically for their bad behavior because they are being assholes. Self awareness in my working world is not a thing — see above comment regarding fucked up health care system.
They are wrong of course. And I am counting the days — literally — when I can leave my weapons in their sheaths. One day Real Ann, who does swear some — but not as much as Nurse Ann — will be the person who gets to stick around all the time time.
I can hear those coloring books are calling my name — “Come on Bitch! What are we waiting for?”