Have you ever seen a woman in need of the very first pregnancy of her life? She is a desperate woman. She is the kind of woman you want to be very careful with, for she carries her emotions on the surface of her skin, and understandably so.
If ever the proverb about not folding hands when a leper is around applied, it does with this woman.
First, she has to contend with all manner of accusers – an irrational husband demanding a child; in-laws insulting her; society casting accusing glances and, worst of all, her own conscience, creating monsters of fear, doubt and imagination that she had never encountered before.
Have you ever encountered a woman with an obstinate pregnancy? No, not a difficult pregnancy. Those ones are so many, that lady by your side could be carrying one.
A stubborn pregnancy is one which wants to turn the woman’s life around: Make her crave strange foods, some of which no balanced person would eat. A stubborn pregnancy makes her detest the very man she craved before/ so that she got that very pregnancy.
This makes you think if that pregnancy had been in before it was in, it would never have happened. It also makes her acquire the moods of five clans of violent lionesses and vicious wasps and a lot besides.
Now lay these two scenarios in the same space, one after the other. You have this woman, who has taken so long to conceive, she is ready to go to the basest of levels to feel the life of a growing embryo in her womb. See, there are ‘normal’ doctors and then there’s the other breed.
These are the ones who are said to ask for the heart of a cricket and the central seed in a millet head, before they aid you to conceive – sometimes practically.
So, this woman really wants to conceive and before long, God answers her prayers. One day, she wakes up and, without having had food poisoning; she is retching and rushing to the sink. Bingo! She is in the family way.
Then trouble begins…
It is night-time. She has barely managed to go through the day looking at that goblin of the neighbour’s maid, who only dresses in demons’ clothes, uses a perfume made from a mixture of ammonia gas and rotten eggs, suddenly speaks like a knife scraping against a saucepan.
Then this monster, her previously sweet husband, comes into bed and [accidentally] touches her. In truth, he did not touch her; his skin touched her skin and that’s the equivalent of him getting a Gisu circumcision knife and skinning her in the dead of the night.
Without warning, she will scream at him asking, ‘Can’t you keep to your side of the bed? Must you shove me off the bed so I can give you your space?’ In terror, he will of course crawl to the very edge of the bed, where he will keep awake so he does not let his knee touch her back a second time.
I was told about one who had waited in vain; tried the intra-venous thing to no avail and had resigned herself to that mistress of distress, fate.
Then when she least expected it, the two gametes touched and a pregnancy resulted.
Then five thousand hells broke loose and ten leagues of demons occupied her mind, as the embryo occupied her womb.
She abused every living thing that crossed her path; hated the very science behind human conception; harboured malevolent thoughts towards anyone who cooked certain foods on the village.
This is because the aroma of those foods somehow always found its way towards her homestead.
She even resigned from running the family business, swearing to never, ever return to it. Three months down the pregnancy line, however, the morning sickness, cravings, hatred for her man and other people and all other such eccentricities had gone, and she wondered where her personality had hidden all those three year-long months.
When she compared the two sides to the same world, she did not even think twice before giving a second pregnancy a chance. And people wonder why men prefer to be male.