Voiceless by Merriam AlFuhaid


Wake up, parental units. No, I don’t need my diaper changed. No, I don’t need to be fed. I’m just bored. Since I can’t sit upright yet and watch TV, looking at your exhausted faces at 3 AM is the next best thing. And let me tell you, it’s pretty damn good. The schedule is fairly predictable: First, we have what I call The Mommy Show, which is cool but it comes on all the time, and I get tired of mentally making fun of Mommy’s singing voice. If I manage to cry for 45 minutes to an hour straight, then I get The Daddy Show. The Daddy Show is my favorite because Daddy is scared of breaking babies. And let me tell you, that is fun to watch. 

No one is scared of breaking adults. Some people actually make a living out of it. (I think they’re called police officers?) But I’m a baby. I’m considered untouchable. Because I’m useless and incapable of speaking, somehow I’ve convinced everyone that they have to do whatever I want, all the time. I don’t know how this happened. I’m not even cute yet—I’m bald and toothless. If that were appealing in the adult world, Daddy would have found someone way hotter than Mommy.

The best thing is, because people can’t figure out what I want most of the time, instead of breaking up with me and telling their friends I’m crazy, they just try giving me everything I could possibly want until something makes me shut up. The cool thing is I discover that a bunch of stuff I didn’t want is pretty awesome too. For example, they always assume I’m hungry when I cry. And I’m like, dude, I don’t do anything. I lie in bed all day. What do you think could be making me hungry this often? But thanks to what is either stupidity or the desperate hope that I won’t be able to cry with my mouth full (not true), I’ve discovered the joys of emotional eating. When I grow up, I’m going to eat to dull the pain of the unbearable isolation of the human condition, but right now I do it because nothing helps me sleep at night like demonstrable evidence of my power.

The whole setup is so awesome I don’t even mind the main drawback, which is that everyone sees me naked all the time. And then they take pictures and show their friends. I was quite offended in the beginning, until I realized that this is the only phase of my life where my au naturel pictures will be called cute and not sexual harassment. Plus, after looking around at my parents and their friends, it seems that this is the best my body will ever look anyway.

The depressing thing, though, is that this is going to end. Sometimes I actually cry about it, and even the power aspect of my tears can’t make me feel better, because when my parents show up I’m just like, “Oh crap, I’m going to end up being a loser like you.” The only thing that does cheer me up is remembering something my older brother once said, which was that no one really considers you an adult until first grade. By that standard, I have more than five and a half years left to do whatever the hell I want. So until then…


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