My First Words

One of my priceless possessions has been lost for years already.  But I’m pretty sure it’s still around the house somewhere.  It has been lost and found again years ago and I’m sure someone has kept it safe.  This was a cassette tape in which my father recorded our voices together when I was around 2 years old.  He was teaching me how to read at that time.  I remember the big picture cards with syllables to read in it.  And that was what my father uses to teach me how to read.

I remember that very time when we were recording our voices.  We were in the two bedroom apartment we were renting at that time.  I think it was a weekend since both my parents were home.  My younger sister came up to the bedroom to ask me to play with her outside but my mother asked her to leave me alone since Daddy was teaching me at that time.

I remember saying “alligator” in the microphone.

Recently my father and my sister were talking in the kitchen one morning.  My father was concerned that my nephew hasn’t said any syllable yet.  And he was saying that my sister needs to spend time with her almost 2 year old son and teach him syllables.

My father cited the shortest and the longest first words I was able to read.  The shortest was when my uncle upon visiting asked me to read the label in the canned chocolate drink.

The longest first word was when I was out with my parents and this I don’t remember, and I was peeking on the newspaper a man was reading.  I think he got annoyed and asked me why was I so intent in disturbing him.  He asked me if I knew how to read.  I think my dad was observing what was happening because he was telling this story that I couldn’t remember.  I didn’t know if I said yes but the man asked me to read the 2nd word of the name of the newspaper which was Bulletin (as in Manila Bulletin).

"Bulletin" my first longest word

I only heard this story once from my father with pride in his voice.  And it’s not often that I hear him proud of his eldest like that.  I know that he was proud of me but in truth, he was the one who did a great job teaching me how to read.  Maybe even if I wasn’t sent to school (which they did until I graduated from med school), I still could have learned a lot from him.


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