What I'll Say

A child’s curiosity never ceases to amaze me. See, I have a newborn baby brother at home and I realized that soon he’ll start noticing that his big sister gets sad a lot. So, this is what I’ll say when my brother asks why I’m sad all the time.

 I’ll say there are bad things in the world. He’ll ask what they are. I won’t think of a good enough answer for his innocent mind, so instead I’ll say sometimes my brain doesn’t work right. The wiring in my brain isn’t right. See, the blue wire that gives you happy feelings got all tied up and stopped working. Sometimes I can get it to work, but it takes a lot to do that and doesn’t last very long.

 Now, what will I say when he asks why I shake and can’t hear him sometimes? To that I’ll say, “I get scared easy.” And the red wire in my brain that teaches you how to calm down needs to be jump-started when that happens because my red wire doesn’t work either.

 When he asks me why I don’t eat dinner sometimes or what those weird things on my skin are, well, to that I’ll simply say that I have a wire in my brain that isn’t supposed to be there. That wire tells me to do bad things sometimes. I’ll assure him he’ll never have that wire.

 This is what I’ll tell my brother when he asks. If he asks. I’ll chalk it up to some bad wiring like I’m a broken down car in an auto body shop. After all this, he’ll ask why my brain does that and why my wires are different from his and to that... to that I simply won’t have an answer.

Melissa Gargiulo

Originally appeared in the 2013-2014 edition of Outside In