Monday, October 22, 2012

The Girl Who Cried, "Gasp!"

Terza is six months old now and she has stumbled upon a new developmental milestone I don't recall either of the other two experiencing. Terza has learned to gasp. Not a nuanced little gasp, as in "Ooooh!  Organic soy crisps on sale this week?" or "Oooh! I almost forgot my husband's birthday tomorrow!" Hers is a horror movie gasp, as in "There's a man with a chainsaw behind you!" or "I thought you were a friend but you're the criminal we've been hunting all this time!"

I am, of course, inordinately proud of her. It is, of course, the very best horror gasp a baby could utter -- uncommonly loud, impressively sustained and, if I do say so myself, a pretty unique sound to be making in the first place. All of which to say, further evidence the kid's joining Mensa soon.

Trouble is, she makes her new, patented horror gasp all the time, with the same frequency babies give to all major developmental milestones, like rolling over and crawling and saying "No!" Approximately twenty times an hour I hear a high-pitched, emergency gasp emanate from the spot I've stowed the baby. It is more than a little disconcerting. And kind of inconvenient, because although I can be pretty suire she's just experimenting with her favorite sound, there's no way to be sure she's not experiencing an actual crisis for which the gasp would be appropriate.

She'd better stumble upon a new milestone soon because otherwise she's gonna be the Girl Who Cried, Gasp!"