Life happens: The baby who cried "WAH!"

April 24, 2014 at midnight
Updated April 23, 2014 at 11:24 p.m.

I don't want to appear ageist or anything, but there's probably a good reason why there are no baby CEOs or babies currently seated in the Senate. And that reason is that babies are horrible communicators.

I know; I know. That's not a very politically correct thing to think in this day and age. But hey, someone had to say it. And trust me, I would know. My very own baby just happens to be a baby. And most of the time, I have no bloody idea what he is trying to say.

For instance, just the other morning he was repeatedly trying to lodge a very loud and formal complaint about something. But all I heard was "Wah, wah," over and over again. Here is the exact transcript:


"What's wrong, little man?"

"Wah! Wah!"

"Are you hungry?"

"Wah! Wah!"

"Does your diaper need changed?"

"Wah! Wah!"

"Are you mad at the ever-increasing wage gap in America that will most likely ensure we'll never be able to afford college for you?"


"Are you saying you think Mommy should pull all her hair out until she's bald?"


"I'm just going to assume you're saying Mommy should pull all her hair out until she's bald."

This exchange went on for a good 30 minutes before I ended it like how I end most of our arguments, which is by shoving a boob in his mouth regardless of whether he wants it or not.

Now, I know there are so-called "experts" out there (and by "experts" I mean people who have been parents for exactly 30 seconds longer than I have) who claim that after awhile, you should be able to decipher the different cries of your baby, easily discerning which one means hunger and which one means "the monkey on my mobile, which was just making me giggle four milliseconds ago, is now terrifying me." But I call shenanigans. Because much like how my dog's bark has the same terror alert level for everything from "I can see a squirrel outside" to "Hey, you are getting murdered by a serial killer," my child has the same soul-shattering cry for every possible situation.

Which means that should the day come, God forbid, that he really is hurt or in distress, I won't realize it because I'm assuming his cries for "My leg has been chopped off" will sound just like the cries he uses when I suck a booger out of his nose using the baby booger sucker thingy.

Of course, maybe it's me. Maybe there is a whole subtle but complex language hidden within each individual "Wah," and I'm just too oblivious or too sleep deprived or too busy trying to find that one lousy sock that always falls off to notice. Maybe this whole time he's been desperately trying to tell me his wants and needs, his hopes and fears, and here I am, all making fun of him and constantly shoving boobs in his face to shut him up. Maybe I'm the problem here.

But since he can't currently speak for himself (and even if he could, it would just sound like "WAH!") I'm going to put the blame squarely on his tiny shoulders.

So if you guys read a news story about a mom who didn't immediately take her infant son to the hospital after his limb was severed, just remember that it wasn't out of cruelty or neglect.

It was simply because I was probably too busy sucking boogers out of his nose and shopping online for believable wigs to notice right away.

Aprill Brandon is a columnist for the Advocate. Her column runs every two weeks in the Your Life section. Comment on this story at



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