Then my aunt corrected herself, “If things weren’t right, she would cry. ‘Crying used to be her form of expression,’ your dad used to say.”
I laughed in response, knowing that phase was past me. But it just was who I was. It wasn’t good or bad behavior (as good behavior suggests that the baby actually understand what the adult desires which is simply ‘not to be seen or heard except when being cute’).
I was and still am the highly sensitive person in my family. As a baby, to my knowledge, I believe that I was fussy. My parents thought that it was cute that I cried so much. So much so that they have many photos of me crying. My face red with frustration and anger. And partly, it was because I couldn’t speak until I was older.
It took many years until I found ways to deal with disappointment, displeasure, and unhappiness.
What if we all had no forms of expression? That while our emotions would burst and everything around us wouldn’t understand why we felt such torment? That the only vehicle of emotion was through tragic outburst and facial expressions? That’s what it’s like. That’s what it’s like to be trapped in a body that can’t do anything. That suddenly in the moments of stress that nothing ever works nobody is in the right place nothing ever is right.
That’s the disaster.
My aunt and I watched my cousin’s 10 month old again. He twisted in his high chair tossing the baby corn and peas around the table. He smiled and stared. He already learned how to attract strangers to the side. All in silence.