I was born screaming. I screamed so loudly it echoed throughout the floor on which I was born. It was probably a cold, wet December, although I did not venture outside and even if I had, I would have no more memory of it than of my screaming as I left my mother’s womb. Maybe I came into the world angry at being separated from my mother, maybe I came into the world unhappy, or maybe I came into it unwillingly.
However I came into it, I came into it vocally, as I was thrust out of my mother’s womb. I caused her much pain, having come out through something called a “C Section” even though to this day I do not know what that is. I must have been as hard to get out of my mother as the meat of a nut is hard to get out of its shell, or a snail out of its shell.
I think part of the reason I was born screaming is that I was also born with a strong attitude. I had my own ideas about things, I was probably as temperamental as the weather of the Pacific Coast. I am told I escaped out of my window once when I was very young, somewhere between 3-5 years of age.
Oddly, over the years I grew quieter and quieter. I withdrew more and more into myself. Maybe I was hiding from my true nature. Maybe I felt unable to express myself the way I wanted to and so I withdrew from the word. Dark thoughts began to cloud my mind, I grew more and more depressed. With the same amount of anger or rage that I entered the world, there was a time I prepared to leave it. I had had enough. Maybe I was born screaming because I knew, somehow, of the pain that awaited me. I must have sensed it coming as a bird senses the coming cold.
Loneliness became my constant companion. I was withdrawn so completely I was like an oyster in its shell, but like an oyster I transformed the irritations of my life. I can’t say that I gave birth to any pearls. I won’t make such a claim. If I have I will let others decide for themselves.
My pain, the irritations of my life, gave me a sort of insane strength, a stubbornness to continue. So I did not leave this world, but decided to hold on, just a little more, another hour, another day, another week, another month, another year, until the years flew by and still I was alive, screaming at the world, though not with my voice.
When my silent screams became hoarse and I could scream no more I was able to listen, and in that listening I discovered that the faith of my parents, the faith they had brought me into, my faith, no longer served me. I had reached its limits, with the way I had been taught it, the way I understood it, so I left it, and if there has been any looking back, is it is to see my former faith from my new perspective outside of it.
I resisted being born a writer, as much as I resisted being born, as much as I desired to kill myself and resisted doing so. But after many years of pregnancy, my inner world gave birth to the writer in me. I allowed this birth, I did not to abort it, and I began to write. I was born screaming again, though I filter the screams of my emotions through these words I type. Each one of them should be felt as deeply as if I were screaming them at the top of my lungs.
I was born screaming. Maybe I did not want to come into this world, any more than for years I wanted to be a writer. I denied this aspect of myself for years, repressed this beautiful part of myself, silenced the best route of my expression. Maybe I was born screaming because I wanted to stay in the womb, stay with what is familiar and comforting, the vibrations of my mother’s voice and the occasional deep thrum of my father’s. Maybe in that same way, before I was born a writer, I wanted to stay with what was easy, comforting and familiar to me in my life.
But I have cut inside myself and pulled my inner writer out, screaming, from the womb of my deepest, inner self, and now the newborn baby is finding his way in a world that is strange and unfamiliar to him, and at the same time exciting and full of wonder. There is so much to learn and come to understand!
I was born screaming, and I have found my voice again.