AWKWARD! Mom Forbids Me to Do This Unless A Nun Approves!

AWKWARD!  Mom FORBIDS It; Makes Me Ask the NUN for Permission!  #humor #school #backtoschool #teacher #student #Bible #earrings #funny

So then… she says “Absolutely not,” with an air of such finality, it would stop Attila the Hun in his tracks.

Because when my Mom says, “no,” she means “NOOOO!”

But I’m a 16-year-old girl desperate to have my ears pierced.

I’ve been lusting after the earrings at the mall for weeks. They have little gold knots – and darling little hoops – and butterflies! Dainty little gold butterflies, people! MUST HAVE.

Attila ain’t got nothin’ on me. I shall not cease my relentless campaign! I shall scourge the earth and annihilate all obstacles until VICTORY IS MINE! – and those precious butterflies adorn my earlobes!

I follow my Mom into the kitchen, where she’s preparing dinner.

I set the table and say, “Mom, WHY can’t I get my ears pierced? I saved up my babysitting money – and I’ll make sure the piercings won’t get infected – and the mall is just—”

“It’s against the Bible.”

“What? The Bible says I can’t get my ears pierced?” I ask.

“Yes,” she says.

(I’m no theologian, but I don’t remember either of the testaments discussing ear jewelry!)

“Where does it say that?” I ask.

She stirs the spaghetti sauce simmering on the stove and says, “The Bible says it’s a sin to self-mutilate.”

Self-mutilate!? I’m not mutilating myself!”

“Well, you want to cut holes into your ears, don’t you?”

“Mom, that’s not the same thing! The Bible just doesn’t want you to hack off your hand or something!”

She arches her eyebrows in that “you say potato; I say po-tah-to” sort of way and returns to her sauce.

Seriously! It’s not that she’s a religious fanatic – I mean we go to Church every Sunday, but she’s not a zealot. But she was raised in a pretty strict Catholic family, back in the days when the Mass was said in Latin.

Lots of hellfire and brimstone in those days.

Lots of hard and fast rules – with clear cut consequences leading straight to eternal damnation.

Pierced ears = self-mutilation = grievous sin = loose morals = immediate downward spiral into prostitution, pregnancy, tattoos, heroin addiction, and *gasp* — skipping Easter Mass.

So I beg and plead and debate and beg some more.

She is resolute. It’s like trying to move Mt. Rushmore just a couple inches to the left. She will not budge.

It’s a sin. It’s a sin. It’s a sin.

I insist that the self-mutilation in the Bible DOES NOT refer to pierced ears! Did.I.mention.the.butterflies.Mom?The.earring.butterflies.are.ADORABLE!

FINALLY, she agrees to CONSIDER it – IF and ONLY IF I consult with a priest or nun to CONFIRM that ear piercing does NOT qualify for Biblical self-mutilation.

Ahhhh! The clouds part, the angels sing: HALLELUJAH! HALLELUJAH!

Quick! Get thee to a nunnery! Find the youngest, hippest, coolest nun you can find!

All night long, I rack my brain to think who I can ask. My very life depends upon it.

Should I ask our parish priest at Mass on Sunday?

Should I ask one of the nuns who teaches at the Catholic school I attend?

Do I choose the youngest nun – the nicest nun – or the nun who teaches the class with my highest grade?

Finally, I settle on Sr. Rita. She’s not young, but she’s an awesome teacher and I love her class.

All day long, I fidget in my blue plaid skirt and white blouse, my legs shaking a mile a minute.

Finally the last bell rings. The rest of the students file out and I stay behind to timidly say, “Sr. Rita, may I please ask you a question?”

She looks up from her papers and says, “Sure.”

Suddenly I lose my nerve. Maybe my Mom is right! Maybe this IS a sin! I don’t want Sr. Rita to think poorly of me.

“Um…um,” I stammer, looking at my shoes.

“What is it, child?” she asks.

“Well, um, my Mom says that something I want to do is a VERY BAD SIN – and that I had to ask your permission before I could do it,” I say.

Sr. Rita raises her eyebrows, crosses her arms, and stares at me intently. “What’s the sin?” she asks.

“I want to…I want to…get my ears pierced!”

Sr. Rita suppresses a grin, her eyes crinkling, as she sighs with relief.

In retrospect, I now realize she probably thought I was going to ask about having sex — or doing drugs — or committing homicide!

In comparison, piercing ears hardly makes a “ding” on the Sin-o-Meter!

She pats my shoulder and says, “Yes, dear, yes. You may pierce your ears. It’s not sinful at all!”

I beam from ear to ear – (soon to be punctured ear to ear) – and thank her profusely!

I fairly explode with happiness! I share the good news with my Mom, who, trooper that she is, lives up to her promise to take me to the mall now that we have a religious blessing.

And I ensure that Sr. Rita is one of the first to see my darling little earring butterflies!

(Of course, I still end up a coke-addict junkie whore – but that’s completely unrelated to the pierced ears.)

Ha! OK, just kidding! Fear not, Sr. Rita, where ever you are: your decree was sound and just. I’ve not squandered your blessing. My pierced ears and I will see you in Heaven one day. (It may take some pretty heavy-duty negotiating to get me on the admit-list, but I aim to rock & roll up there in the Great Beyond!)

— Darcy Perdu

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(Anything YOU wanted as a kid that was impacted by parental reluctance, outright disapproval, or religious beliefs?  Do you remember back when you got YOUR piercings?)

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40 replies on “AWKWARD! Mom Forbids Me to Do This Unless A Nun Approves!

  1. Julie said:

    It is good to know that you can still go to heaven if you’ve pierced your ears.

    • If you have any trouble at the Pearly Gates, just say “Sr. Rita approved all ear piercings!”

  2. Arionis said:

    Oh I can so relate to this! My dad was a part time country preacher. Back when I was in middle school the big thing was disco parties. All of my friends would go but my dad declared that dancing was a SIN! Didn’t I know that doing the disco duck would lead to hard drugs and illicit sex with all the 7th grade harlots? So I was a middle school social outcast because I never got to go. In retrospect, he probably did me a favor as far as the disco part goes. But I totally blame my dad for the fact that I can’t dance worth a damn. Except for when I am drunk and then I still can’t dance but I think I can. Still got plenty of other vices though. You know what they say about preacher’s kids!

    • Ha! Your Dad was just trying to protect you from disco! We ALL could have used that protection! I’m cringing just thinking about my polyester pants and Saturday Night Fever-inspired dance moves!

    • Ha! Nope, she was a pretty cool nun! I’m lucky she gave the thumbs up!

  3. That’s hilarious. But I’m surprised, given this information, that you aren’t robbing banks to support your appetite for heroin. I mean, I had no idea you had pierced ears. I guess there’s lots-o-stuff I don’t know about you. Maybe you ARE robbing banks to support your heroin habit. Maybe that’s what makes your stories sooo funny.

    • Precisely! That heroin makes me HILARIOUS! :o)

  4. Kim said:

    I wonder what your Mom and the Sister would have said if you had asked to have your ears DOUBLE pierced?

    • Well, that there’s a 1-way ticket to HELL, missy!

    • Right, Kathy? And my Mom trusted that I told the truth about what Dr. Rita said — she didn’t make me get it in writing! Ha!

  5. This was hilarious!!!

    I grew up Catholic and did the whole Catholic school thing as well…..but apparently it didn’t do me a lick of good because I just rebelled against all the rules once I got into High School.

    BUT….. as a child my mother would say the following:

    Eating meat on Fridays during Lent = You’re going to hell
    Missing out on church = You’re going to hell
    Faking a sickness to get out of going to church = You’re going to hell
    Listening to Guns and Roses and INXS = must take daughter to visit priest, I fear for her soul.
    Jolene recently posted..Take me out to the ball gameMy Profile

    • Omigod, Jolene! Sounds like we grew up in the same house and attended the same school! Most of the nuns told us that kissing boys would lead straight to pregnancy and eternal damnation — and not always in that order!

  6. Well, I did wear pants to The First Baptist Church in Deep South USA. It was about 40 years ago, before the cell phone era, but everybody already knew about it by the time I got to school on Monday. The original Bad Girl. Loved your post!

    • You wore PANTS to a Baptist Church in the Deep South? I shall pray for you, child. Sr. Rita and I will TRY to get you into Heaven…but I dunno if they’ll take ya! Ha!

  7. Erin said:

    My mum grew up with her mom saying “if God wanted you to put holes in your ears, he would have!” She had to wait until she was 21 and married to get her ears pierced. So skip ahead 30 years and my Nana, 65, called me one day and said, don’t tell your mother but Grandpa said he’d buy me diamond earrings if I got my ears pierced, so will you help me get it done? I sent her to the mall and several days later at Sunday dinner mum noticed and repeated the “if God wanted you to have holes….” lecture. Maybe one day your Mom will get hers done too!!

    • That is so funny, Erin! My mom would say that too! “If God wanted you to have __________, he would have!” It fit just about any scenario for what we wanted to do!
      And that is HILARIOUS that your Nana got her ears pierced at 65!! LOVE THAT!
      My Mom STILL wears clip-on earrings — but maybe ONE day…we’ll get her liquored up and take her to the mall! Ha!

      • Paul said:

        Ha! My Grandmother (Nan) always said the same thing. As I got older and more sarcastic I used to reply with “Well Nan, if God wanted you to have a refrigerator, you’d have been born with one.”

        • Bet she loved that response! :o) Hope she smacked you up side the head! Ha!

      • Erin said:

        maybe if you promised her diamonds??

        • Ha! Yes, that might do it! In fact, if you give ME diamonds, I might even get a few MORE things pierced!

    • Thanks, Parri! Fortunately you and I both have plenty of embarrassing tales to tell! :o)

  8. Connie Conehead said:

    Oh, gosh, I can just see Sr. Rita trying to stifle a laugh! Yes, you picked the right nun to ask. Although, I suspect Sr. Patricia would have also given you the OK!

    • Right? We actually had some pretty great nuns at SVA!

  9. Paul said:

    Very funny post Darcy. It really is all about asking the right person, isn’t it? I think that this extends out of childhood and into adult life as well. Good lesson. Quite often,we can achieve a lot more of what we seek when we ask someone who may help us as opposed to waiting for someone whose job they feel it is to say “No”. Ha!

    When I ran long haul I found my self on I-49 south in Louisiana one day. I did not have any permits for LA but my office said I didn’t need any – and that was true in some states. So, I pulled onto the highway scale at Pineville and, of course, the officer called me inside. I showed him my paperwork and explained that I didn’t have a permit and would like to buy one (trip permits are avaiable in most states). He checked his manuals and permit information and could not find any mention of my base province – Nova Scotia. Every other province and state in the US, Canada, and Mexico was listed, but no Nova Scotia. He was quite jovial and just shrugged and said I could continue. Now officers like that are rare so I asked if he could put it in writing that I had reported to him and date and stamp it, and explain that no permit fees were due. He laughed and obliged. So, I left the scale with a letter on DOT letter head, dated and stamped and signed, saying I was legal.

    lo and behold, I had to cross 2 more Louisiana scales – one permanent at Toomey and one temporary scale – before getting to Houston, and each time they asked for a permit and each time I produced my letter and each time they let me go. I travelled through Louisiana occassionally for 6 more years and that letter got me a free pass everytime. Ha!

    So I got my “Get out of jail free” card from a DOT officer instead of a Nun, but the result was the same.

    • I want a Get Out of Jail Free Card too! You’re so smart to ask the officer to put that in writing — and obviously charming enough that he actually agreed! I should have asked Sr. Rita for a Get Out of Hell Free Card! :o)

      • Paul said:

        Yep, imagine if you had gotten Sister to sign a letter saying that no piercing was sinful. How many times and where could you get pierced before the power of letter wore off? Ha!

  10. Whew! What about if you’ve got… um… other stuff pierced?

    So, the Mother Superior of this nunnery in Napa gets up in front of all the Sisters, and decrees in a sad and disappointed voice that there seems to be a case of Gonorrhea in the convent.
    One old nun at the back turns to another and sighs: “Oh, thank God. I was getting so tired of Chardonnay.”
    Helena Hann-Basquiat recently posted..One Night in Toronto – The Dilettante Blog Hop ResumesMy Profile

    • I think my mom would have FAINTED if I suggested piercing anything else! Ha! (and love the Chardonnay joke!)

  11. Lady Anne said:

    The Squire and I were married in 1974 – second time for both of us – and I got a dressing down from my Southern Baptist mother-in-law (who never went to church) for wearing a pants suit to the local Episcopal church. It had been a non-issue at home for years; I was one of the last women to do it. Vera is probably rolling in her grave, now that we have women clergy.

    • Church fashion has certainly come a long way! I used to wear a mantilla to Mass! And in the old days, pantsuits were considered scandalous. Today, some people wear shorts to our Church! (I say — hey, as long as they’re showing up, who cares?) :o)

  12. Ahh lucky you! My mom pierced my earlobes against my will at the age of 4! I was screaming like crazy and the person who pierced me screamed back at me. It was a scary experience!

    But I can wear all those sorts of cute earrings too so lucky me! Haha!

    • at 4? Yikes! traumatic! My daughter keeps telling me I should have pierced her ears when she was just a few weeks old before she knew what was coming! Nope I made her wait til she was 13!

      • Yeah! Apparently, according to some research papers, it is recommended to pierced your daughters’ (or sons’ if you would) earlobes when they were babies because then they wouldn’t have too much pain and ear disease as the pierced hole heal. Just for your extra information.

        I guess I’ll pierce my baby’s earlobes right after the doctor announces “It’s a girl, yay!”. I would have my team of ‘Earlobes Piercers’ in the labor room with me. All works done in a day. Hah!

        • Wann, that’s brilliant! and hilarious! An Earlobe Piercer in the Labor & Delivery Room! ha!

  13. geo said:

    Just started reading you & skimming the archives. Wanted to say that you can’t take the Catholic out of the girl….my parents had a perfect method for making us toe the line as teenagers. If I was a minute late for curfew or my parents thought I’d been drinking or something sinful, my mom would cheerfully pop into my bedroom at 5:00 a.m. on Sunday morning and sweetly say “We decided to go to 6 a.m. mass this morning…you’ve got 35 minutes to get ready”. The only reason to skip mass at our house was to be dead…..not even dying counted! BTW – this has worked marvelously with my own teenagers!

    • Ha! 6 am Mass! Clever parents!!
      And I can totally relate to the mandatory Mass attendance.
      If we ever tried to avoid it due to illness, we’d hear THIS for the next week: “If you’re too sick for Mass, you’re too sick to see your friends, watch TV, play cards,…eat.” etc Ha!