Monday, June 22, 2009

Human Eggs, Umbilical Cords, and Hugging

So I don’t usually write on Saturday mornings, or Fridays or Sundays for that matter, either. My hubby is off work those days and makes the quiet pre-dawn writing sessions a little more difficult. But this morning he is still in bed! As I got up and awkwardly tried to put both feet into one pajama leg, he stirred a little, Aaarp!’d, croaked out the word, “coffee”, then turned over and went back to sleep. Little does he know I have the coffee already made and it’s just sitting down here waiting for him.

My coffee maker is behaving nicely, not dribbling coffee out onto the counter whenever I try to pour into a cup. I think it is trying to make up for so many months of bad behavior ’cause it felt neglected for a month.

And what about these human eggs, you say? Well, the other night when Colby was on the phone talking to his brother-in-law about work stuff, I was upstairs tucking the kids into bed. Usually Colby reads Josh a few pages of his dinosaur book at night, so I picked up the book where they’d left off the night before and started reading. There was this picture of a mean dinosaur eating the eggs of a nice dinosaur. Josh didn’t like that at all and wanted to know why that mean dinosaur was doing that.

“Well, that’s just what they like to eat.”

Josh looked horrified.

“We eat chicken eggs, you know!”, I said, not realizing the myriad of questions THAT was going to raise.

His horrified look turned to disgust.

“Why do we eat the chickens’ babies?”, he wanted to know.

“Well, honey, those eggs that we eat or not actually baby chickens, because those eggs were not fertilized by the daddy rooster.”

Wait. Stop right there. Don’t let panic overtake you!!!! You know where this conversation is now going to go (thanks a lot for bringing up chicken eggs, ya mush brain) so calm down and just go with it.

And so the conversation progressed from chicken eggs to human eggs and how all animals have boys and girls in their species and that’s how all of their eggs get fertilized. He wanted to see a human egg, and the explanation that it’s too tiny to see didn’t deter him, so I got out the book, A Child Is Born. Published in the 60’s, it’s discreet and the only detail of the actual fertilization it gives is of what happens on the cellular level. It also has a lot of pictures of the development of the embryo, fetus, and baby as it grows and changes and then shows some discreet pictures of the birth. Did I mention it's discreet? Whew.

The umbilical cord thing really creeped him out. He grasped the importance of how it feeds the baby and all, but when it came time to cutting the cord, you could almost visibly see him shudder. lol. Poor kid.

He had more questions about the egg and how the baby gets out of the actual egg, so we went back to the front of the book and I explained that the egg actually turns into the baby. He was so confused by that. I turned the page, and lo and behold, a page I’d missed the first time! It had a lovely picture of thousands of swimmers under a microscope, and a side-view line drawing of the male anatomy. So I stumbled through a quick summary of the “Daddy” half of the equation, pointing to the little swimmers, and then pointed to the line drawing.

“That’s a boy, uh…..(do I say it? do I say it?) uh…. (insert his own term for his personal anatomy which I won't embarrass him later in life by publishing here). Ugh! I know I should have used the correct terminology; he’s really getting to old to use that phrase in reference to his male parts, but dang it’s a hard habit to break!)

To which my son turns and looks at me with a look that totally says, “DUH, mom, you are SO lame.” and says, “Yeah, I know.”

Okay, then. Moving right along. I closed up the book and tried to then turn the conversation back to dinosaurs, but he wanted to know if babies were fertilized when a Daddy and Momma – Hug! Lol.

“No son, it’s a little more complicated than a hug, and it only happens when a boy and a girl are all grown up and get married, and I’ll explain more about that when you are older.”

Finally, he was satisfied with that, said his prayers, and went back to his dinosaurs. I pulled the door closed behind me and breathed a huge sigh of relief that step one was over and done with and I had somehow managed to keep calm and not dash from the room mumbling something about birds-and-bees-and-your-father’s-job-not-mine.

*whew* Surviving the raising of children might just be more difficult than I thought! lol!

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