As a child, I dreaded speaking. A fear of eye contact and a tendency to hesitate in conversation underlay this dread. Nevertheless, I was an avid listener and contemplator, and I often felt an urge to express myself. The day I discovered the marvels of the alphabet, I felt a wave of excitement. Over the years, the written word became my essential tool of communication and self-discovery.

In a way, I learned to speak through writing.

— Melany Su, From “As a Child”



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