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Photo by Sampor Burke, Mekong Semester.

Connecting With Kids…

I have babysat kids for many years and I have always thought that I have a connection with them. However this was not the case when we were on Don Donh, an island in the middle of the Mekong. I was a big hit with my little brothers. We would play shooting games and draw pictures. But, on one of the first nights on the island my neighbor came over with a cute baby. The baby had tons of fat and I tried to make her laugh and smile. She looked at me for awhile, unsure of who I was and why I looked so different. Once she looked at me long enough she burst into tears. I thought it was a one time thing… boy was I wrong.

The next evening  the same chunky baby came over to my house. This time she took one look at me and her chin began to quiver. Uh oh, here it comes. Ear piercing crying.

The next couple of nights my family would bring the baby up to my face to see if I would make her cry again. Guess what… I did. After making her cry probably 3 to 4 times, one night she came over while we were eating, and my family told me to put my hair up to see if that would prevent her from crying. It did not. She looked at me for awhile and then exploded into tears. Everyone in my family was simultaneously trying to calm down the baby and look to see how I was reacting. There was an overwhelming amount of commotion because the baby was crying and there were so many people and I couldn’t stop laughing. Nothing worked, she continued to scream and cry and my family was laughing at me for making her cry. Finally her grandmother took her out of the room in hopes of calming her down but instead the baby threw up. She threw up all over all the shoes. Meanwhile I was sitting there thinking to myself  “wow I made a baby cry so hard that she threw up.”

Obviously I’m not as great with kids as I thought.