Chapter 1: Me, a toddler
I awoke as a baby alone in a cramped room in a cramped apartment. Finding nothing to do, I started searching for somebody. Finally, when I was ready to give up crawling, I caught a glimpse of a tall figure. I looked back. Indeed there was a tall figure. A man, actually. The man got the feeling he was being watched and slowly turned around. When he saw who was watching him,he apologized and laughed like he was talking to a person who understood him perfectly. “Hello, Calista, I can see you have woke up,”the man said. I had absolutely no idea what to say but I could see that he expected me to respond, so all I said was, “Ga ba.” “Good day to you too!” he replied, like he totally understood me. But I was not paying any attention to him at all. My mind had drifted back to what he had called me. Calista, I thought. I liked that. When I was done thinking about what he called me, I heard him saying that Calista was my name. Oh, I thought. That’s how Calista is related to me. It’s my name. Not that I knew all those words, though. Finally, he asked me if I was hungry. I didn’t know what that meant so I said, “Ya,”. “Great!” he said. And so he picked me up and took me to the kitchen. “Kitchen” is a word he taught me.The kitchen was really small. He quickly got a glass of milk for me. I refused. He shook his head. Then I got mad. I started crying. But I immediately regretted that when he shoved the bottle into my mouth. This thing was glorious! I got off the baby chair and started dancing happily. The man grinned toothily. “ By the way, I’m your dad,” he said. So he’s my dad, I thought. I’d been wondering who he was. After that, he decided to give me a tour of the apartment even though I had already seen most of it. There were only two more rooms left to show. The first room was the living room. It was the size of a big kitchen and had almost no furniture. The last room was the cribroom. It was the room that had my crib in it. It too had barely any furniture. The only furniture there was the crib and a couch crammed next to the tiny bathroom. After my dad finished the tour, he said I should get some. shut-eye. I had no idea what that meant, but I didn’t have to. I fell into a deep sleep at the moment he finished that sentence. I woke up three hours later, feeling nice and refreshed. My dad was in the living room, sitting on the only chair and reading The New York Times newspaper. When he noticed me staring at him with mild curiosity he put down the newspaper, randomly picked me up, and took me down to the bottom of the building. I was amazed how these machines could take you down floors if you just pressed a button.(A word my dad taught me.) When we got to the first floor, he took me outside to the pool. The moment I saw it, an unfamiliar feeling of dread rose up in me. Whatever liquidy substance this was, it scared me. Like my dad was reading my thoughts, he told me that this thing was called water and it was nothing to me afraid of. “But still, he assured me, “he would not force me to get in it. The thing that really confused me was how I understood the words he taught me so easily and quickly. Was he speaking in baby language? Or was this all a dream? Either way, it was pretty neat.I still had no clue why we were out in the scorching hot sun and if it was for no reason, I would like to go back upstairs.
He seemed to understand me when I started crying madly because he raced upstairs as fast as he could exactly when I started. By now, it was already 6:00pm so my dad quickly but carefully put me in my crib and kissed me goodnight. He left the door a tiny bit ajar so I could come to him if I had a problem. Tonight it was quite unnecessary for him to do that because I dreamt of very nice things like having milk every day and other stuff. The next morning I was especially happy because my dream about milk turned out to be true! ( I also chugged down three full bottles of milk in 54 seconds.) That afternoon, I noticed that another family had one dad and one mom.( A word that my dad taught me.) I asked dad why they had a mom and a dad and I only had a dad. He didn’t reply. After ten minutes of crying, he got annoyed and crammed a pacifier into my mouth. It soothed me. We did this routine every day. I grew my first tooth. It became the next year.Which, if you ask me, seemed like an eternity.Finally, on May 13, which apparently was the day I came to life, dad told me it was my birthday.He had said it was basically a celebration for me every year. I was disappointed that it wasn’t every day, but I was grateful. He also informed me about a place called daycare coming up in September. And the way he described it made it seem like a palace. I was now extra extra happy because today was my birthday.Since I hadn’t made any friends yet, dad decided to bring his friends and their kids here. The good news was that they all had one-year old kids. One of them had a sixteen year old kid with them but she would hang with the adults.
To be Continued….