Tuesday, June 20, 2006

embarrassing incident

My mother swears that she does not remember this incident.

But I do.

It was significant, after all: It was the original S.W.B.

And we all know how reliable a six-year-old's memory is.

The incident occurred while we were visiting a friend of my mother's, who lived in a block of flats. They had been inside drinking coffee, as I played outside at the bottom of the long car park. There was an old cement block incinerator in the small garden there, and I had been poking around in it; searching for what, I don’t know.

What I found was a pair of bloodied underpants in a paper bag.

I ran inside, waving the underpants in my hand and screeching.

Mum, you have to call the police! Someone’s been murdered! I found these in the incinerator!

My mother and her friend were shocked, and rightly so. As my mother forced me to dispose of the evidence and sent me off to wash my hands, I heard her friend say to her:

I think you’re going to have to have a little talk with Megan.

Now this sparked my interest. A Little Talk. I nagged my mother all the way home: What did she mean by a little talk? Are we going to have a little talk? What was the little talk going to be about? Could she give me any hints?

My mother said: Not now, Megan.

A week or so later, when my father and brother were “elsewhere”, my mother sat me down next to her on the couch. She placed a book on the coffee table in front of us. It was a big square hard-cover, and very innocuous – all pastel colours and dainty line-drawings.

We went through the book together. She was very patient and calm, slowly pointing out the ovaries and the fallopian tubes and the uterus, and carefully, methodically explaining what each one did.

When we were done, I said to her:

So, the blood comes out because you have to make room for the egg?

My mother sighed.

Yes, Meg, that’s more or less it.

I believed this until I was about fifteen years old.

Sad, huh?

11 Comments:

At 10:45 PM, Blogger StellaNova said...

Both my mother AND my father sat down with me to have 'that' talk. I just wanted to disappear into the crack between the cushions on the couch. Why was my father talking to me about my VAGINA!!!! My book was red and it was called 'Mummy (actually, I think it was Mommy), where do babies come from?'.

Until this year even, I thought I had developed a pretty good understanding of the workings of the 'plumbing'. IVF has taught me sooo much more.

That little red book had nothing on my IVF manual ...

 
At 11:20 PM, Blogger StellaNova said...

And on another note, how do you make your blog look so great? I have no idea about all of this HTML stuff, but I'm pretty handy with photoshop and any other creative medium (I actually started teaching as a visual art teacher). Any advice or good references to help me? I've got loads of ideas - I just need to know how to achieve them.

Ta :)

 
At 12:18 AM, Blogger DD said...

No one in my family gave me 'the talk'. I remember seeing a tampon commercial on TV and asking my dad what it was. I only remember him mumbling he didn't know.

Stellanova is right about the education IVF gives you. There's too many women out there who get pregnant who really have no idea how it all works. They suck.

 
At 1:36 AM, Blogger Mary Ellen and Steve said...

I got my talk from the nuns in Catholic. I can still remember Sister Miriam coming into class with a tampon suspended in water and then telling us all about the birds and the bees. I think we were all mortified and surprised that a nun could know about such things.

 
At 1:45 AM, Blogger Just another Jenny said...

It never fails to amaze me that children beleive just about anything there mother's tell them.

 
At 2:42 AM, Anonymous Manuela said...

Well... the 'book' that my mother used had me believing that if you hugged while lying side by side in bed under the blankets... that the hospital gave you a baby.

 
At 5:59 AM, Blogger projgen said...

My mother told me nothing. I saw a film in school, which to this day, I believe triggered my period. I got my very first period THAT AFTERNOON.

If I had never seen that film, I would never have gotten my period. Until I, too, read the IVF manual.

I don't care what you say, that's what I believe.

(oh, and my sister? When she got her first period, she started screaming - she didn't have the benefit of a film, so she was convinced she was bleeding to death. Thank Gd I at least was home, so she didn't have the added embarrassment of having called an ambulance...)

 
At 7:36 AM, Blogger Thalia said...

Shame she tried so hard then gave up at the last minute! I never remember a talk since my mum started answering questions when my brother was born when I was 2.75. I guess I just learnt things incrementally...

 
At 11:34 AM, Blogger Flygirl said...

Well at least she doesn't remember it.

Embarrassing moments are worse when everyone else remembers them too.

 
At 8:07 AM, Blogger Lut C. said...

That's a lovely story. And your understanding was excellent for a six-year old, even though it was less so for a fifteen-year old. ;-)

But don't blame yourself, even with all the nudity on tv, the workings of the reproductive system are portrayed inaccurately in most tv shows.

 
At 4:16 AM, Blogger Beagle said...

My mother refused to give me the talk, claiming that my father "explained things better". Well, I was not about to ask HIM, so I read Judy Blume instead.

 

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