My kiddo was around three and half year old. My sister in law (SIL)’s was pregnant and her delivery was due in December sometime. So she had come to Mumbai for her delivery. It was my Kiddo’s first encounter with the pregnancy. He saw all preparations in full swing for arrival of new guest- clothes, craddle, special food items. He saw the big baby bump his Bua was sporting. One evening his Bua called him and put his small hands on her belly. He could feel tiny movements from within. He was all excited. He was telling one and all about baby in Bua’s belly.
In couple of hours the excitement waned and curiosity peeped in. At sleeping time he came closer to me and called me in a confidential tone, “Mammaaaa….” By now I had learnt to distinguish this special tone. Immediately my mind went into “attention” mode. I tried to keep my tone casual and said, “yes beta??”
Kiddo: Mammaaaa how did the baby go into Bua’s belly??
I was dumbstruck. Now how to answer him?? I had dreaded this question since arrival of my SIL and that dreaded moment had now arrived. Still I had not reached the solution. I thought for a while and finally said-
Me: Beta the baby did not go in but it was formed there.
I could see that he was not really convinced by my answer but he didn’t ask anything further. I also maintained the silence.
Since he had not received satisfactory answer he started thinking on his own. Next night when we were alone he asked me, “Mammaaaa, did Bua swallow the baby??” (He seemed disgusted with his own idea)
Me (shocked): Nooo!!!
He seemed relieved. At least Bua had not swallowed the baby.
Kiddo: Then did the baby enter inside through Bua’s nose??
Me (helpless): Nooo Beta.
Kiddo: Then the baby must have entered through Bua’s belly button for sure..
Me (exasperated): No, no, no Beta. The baby was formed inside mother’s womb.
He was exploring all holes in the body and trying to figure out whether the baby had entered Bua’s belly through that route.
His eyes were still telling me that he was not convinced with the answer. For the first time his Mamma had failed him!
Next day when I got back from office my kiddo came to me bursting with excitement. I finally found out how baby got inside. Now it was my turn to ask him.
Kiddo: Dadi told me that when all of us were sleeping the God placed the baby inside Bua by magic. She had prayed for the baby.
Me: Is it??
Hmm.. since his Mamma had failed to answer his query he had naturally turned to his next best resource Dadi for answers.
I was not happy the way this quest had ended. But all the same I felt relieved that now I need not answer this question for some time.
Finally after few months I found a book named “Where do babies come from?” The book is specially meant for quenching thirst of small ones. Nice illustrations, to the point information and absolutely decent language. It explains general reproduction cycle first for plants, then for birds, then for cats and finally for humans. Must have book! I showed the book to my kiddo.
In nutshell I told him Daddy has a sperm and Mamma has an egg (no, this is not like chicken egg we eat!! Mamma cannot take out her egg. It’s there in her ovaries. I had to show my kiddo the position of ovaries..phew..) The egg joins the sperm to make a tiny baby inside Mamma’s womb. Slowly tiny legs grow, tiny hands grow, head and eyes grow. Simultaneously other organs like heart, lungs are formed. It takes around 9 months for a baby to grow. When baby grows fully the Doctor takes out the baby by doing small operation (I didn’t dare mention normal delivery yet).
Though Kiddo’s quest had ended with Dadi’s simple explanation Mamma’s urge to give correct information had not ended. Mamma’s quest ended only when she gave correct explanation to the kiddo.
As a mother I always believed that we should try to give factually correct answers to our kids. We need not elaborate on not-so-required details. But try to stick to the facts. At least do not give incorrect explanations. At times I prefer to tell my kid that Mamma does not know the answer. But she will find it and come back. And yes majority of the times it works. It works because Mamma comes back with the answers!!
Friends how did you like today’s blog?? Let’s meet again and explore my kiddo’s first rendezvous with the original “Thalaiva” Rajanikant.