Tall Story – Issue 23

THE STRANGE PHENOMENON OF BRIGHT AS A BUTTON

Don’t ask me how, or when, it happened but I was born with self-awareness.

I can remember staring down at the nub of skin and thinking, ‘That’ll put a crimp in my evening wear’.

Later on I was relieved to constantly stare at a recess that put me in mind of the end of a balloon; rubbery and satisfying to toy with.

My lucidity still comes and goes though. This is being written during one of my sharper periods. Oh, hold on…

Their r times wen spelin (sick) dezerts me, even tho i can think loosid (sick). How did i get a leckseekon? who nose. Its a buger sometimes. (sick)

…As you can see, I can’t control the flow and the sick in brackets is not necessarily referring you to incorrect spelling but indicating just how the baby food repeats on me and causes such embarrassing moments of foul regurgitation. I have thought these episodes are brought on by stress or acute self-consciousness but I cannot be sure, yet. I’ve heard mum and dad talk about my behaviour but they can’t figure it yet either.

I think I am entering an emoshunallee hard peereeodd and my mood swings are making everee1 uncomfatabble esspeshallee mee. (sick)…

…When it’s dark is hardest. I can’t sleep because of the wind and sometimes I cry out. It wakes mum up and I feel really guilty. So, most of the time I just burp, fart and, yes, that as well, until I drop off, eventually.

As if learning wasn’t confusing enough, I’ve this nagging self-doubt: how to be sure what I am is me, my self-image and then there’s how others see me. I think others see me as modestly cute – I’m a bit of a butterball just at the minute. I’ve not found any sport I like – you know, the slightly embarrassed, can’t actually say ‘ooh, he’s gorgeous’, but he’s not the ugliest but how to sound sincere moments when people pat you on the head.

If only I could master the spoken language thing so as to be able to express aurally what I’m thinking. The books I’m given don’t really help. I mean, pop-up, tactile and lacking plot and story. It seems they expect me to be impressed and put everything in my mouth. How do they expect me to learn the nuances of the language I can already think in? I ask you. Oops. (sick)

I suppose my moodiness doesn’t help anyone, me included. I can’t control the massive swings from elation to frustrated anger, and the crying makes my head ache. Before now, I’ve even had a sore jaw after…(sick)…

…a partikler bad seshun. Itz gon agen. (sick)…

…fonetiks dusnt help spellin wen will i lern mor komleks wurd konstityoushun??

mebbe ill use that litul rekordr bort for my last speshul…(sick)

…day. Ah, that’s better. Possibly, I might be learning better self-control as that spell was much shorter than previously. (sick)…Oops, the other. Where’s that damned potty. Do they need to put it in the middle of the room? Even our cat, Vince, laughs at me when I’m on display. I got desperate the other time (event not so much clock, although I say one the other time and it made me wonder about event order) and nearly fell in the toilet. At least, with a lot of effort and stretching, I could close the door and have some dignified privacy. I get the impression they, my parents, didn’t get why I cried so hard when soiling myself, or when on the potty in the middle of the room. If only I could tell them in language just how much the  little room upstairs means to me and my development.

If we’re not careful, self-awareness could develop in to severe and destructive self-consciousness, maybe even psychoses.

I get the impression they don’t understand why I make a break for the door when the kid from next door is on the potty as a form of entertainment for his doting parents. They appear to have no sense of decorum. I feel for him yet, oddly, he seems to lap it up, as if he loves the attention. He’s a bit of a weird one if you ask me. Also, I hope they don’t expect us to be friends just because of contingent proximity or any misguided obligation due to our parents being friendly with each other.

The lad, Nicholas or Nicky, gets real stroppy when there’s any gift giving and he doesn’t get anything. His enthusiasm for objects makes my reserved acceptance of such unfulfilling trinkets look like I am an ungrateful little tyke. i know how parents try hard and in the current economic climate they try to keep up with developments, but I would rather they eased off with the presents and tactile fripperies and concentrated on helping me develop in terms of the peopled world.

Again, I suppose mu own tantrums – and I’m not proud of them – don’t help matters…(sick…sick) Id betta leev it for now… (to be continued?)