My significant other thinks I should make more effort to involve my parents in my pregnancy.
“Ask your dad to touch your belly” he told me the other day.
“That’s not a good idea. He doesn’t like touching people that much.”
“Maybe you can go near him and let him touch your belly by accident.” SW insisted who believes that my dad’s aura is weakened by touching sick people all day and could use some positive energy coming from the baby.
My mother on the other hand touches my belly all the time. She is very happy to caress my belly and speak to it. However when it comes to sharing information and having long mother/daughter conversations, she is not that good.
Lost in her transplantation journals, my mum gets really excited only when a conversation turns scientific. Trying to have the regular chit chat about morning sickness does not really work that well between us.
“So mom, how was it when you were pregnant with me?”
Her face gets an agonized hard expression as if she recalls life in the battlefield: “It was difficult” she says “A day before I delivered I had to sit for my University Exam at Med School. I had so much studying to do. It was such an important exam…” Blah blah blah, she goes on about the exam.
“Did I kick a lot?”
“It was such a long time… I don’t really remember now”.
One last effort:
“So mom, how do you wax the bikini when you are pregnant when you cannot really see down there?”
Finally she finds a way to relate, her eyes light up and her expression changes into that of a happy child that realizes that Christmas is here.
“Do you know that the fetus is the perfect natural transplant?” she says with excitement. “It has 50% completely foreign DNA and yet your body does NOT reject it. It is an unexplained miracle of nature.”
The miracle of nature and its scientific dimensions have finally triggered a conversation. I try to adapt and ask more questions or get more involved practically into Science. Like that time I made my family take a pricey DNA test to find out where our deep ancestors come from and how we are genetically related. The only two people that resisted the test were my sister, who believes human DNA could be similarly compared to the DNA of rats, and my dad who could not give a rat’s ass.
“So is it possible to save the umbilical cord after giving birth…? For the future health of the baby…?” Or something like that.
Her eyes light up again: “You can save the umbilical cord blood for the benefit of Science” she gasps “It is very unlikely your baby will ever need it.” and adds:
“It can be arranged.”