Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Middle Wife

I 've been teaching now for about fifteen years.
I have two children myself, but the best birth story I know is the one I saw in my own second-grade classroom a few years back.

When I was a kid, I loved show-and-tell.
So, I always have a few sessions with  my students.
It helps them get over shyness and usually, show-and-tell is pretty tame.
Kids bring in pet turtles, model airplanes, pictures of fish they catch, stuff like that.
And I never, ever place any boundaries or limitations on them.
If they want to lug it in to school and talk about it, they're  welcome.

Well, one day a little girl, Erica, a very bright, very outgoing child, took her turn and waddled up to the front of the class with a pillow  stuffed under her sweater.
She held up a snapshot of an infant.
'This is Luke, my baby brother, and I'm going to tell you about his birthday.'

'First, Mum and Dad made him as a symbol of their love, and then Dad put a seed in my Mum's stomach, and Luke grew in there.
He ate for nine months through an 'umbrella cord.' 
She was standing there with her hands on the pillow, and I was trying not to laugh  was and that wishing I had my camcorder with me.
The kids are watching her in amazement.

'Then, about two Saturdays ago, my Mum started saying and going,
'Oh, Oh, Oh, Oh!' 
Erica put a hand behind her back and groaned.

'She walked around the house for, like an hour, saying
'Oh, oh,  oh!'

Now this kid is doing a hysterical duck walk and groaning.

'My Dad called the middle wife. She delivers babies, but she doesn't have a sign on the car like the Domino's man. They got my Mum to lie down in bed like this.'

Then, Erica laid down with her back against the wall. 

'And then, pop! My Mum had this bag of water she kept in there in case he got thirsty, and it just blew up and spilled all over the bed, like psshhheew!'

This kid had her legs spread with her little hands miming water flowing away.
It was too much!

'Then the middle wife started saying 'push, push,'  and 'breathe, breathe.
They started   counting, but never even got past ten.
Then, all of a sudden, out came my brother.
He was covered in yucky stuff that they all said it was from Mum's play-centre, so there must be a heck of a lot of toys inside there.'

Then, Erica stood up, took a big theatrical bow and  returned to her seat.
I'm sure I applauded the loudest.
Ever since then, when it's show-and-tell day, I bring my camcorder, just in case another 'Middle  Wife' comes along. 

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