Monday, June 9, 2008

Birds & Bees and Other Things

I had the talk with my children. You should have seen the look on their faces. It was one of shock and disgust. I’m glad kids think sex is so repulsive at this age. It’s a healthy mechanism to help them avoid things they aren’t ready for.

My wife related that my daughter told her friend, “Well, my mom has had four kids and she’s never had sex.” I suppose it was past time to explain the birds and bees.

In the literal sense, I’m not sure I understand the birds OR the bees. Did you know that when equating ergonomic and physical dimensions of a bee that it should be impossible for them to fly? Their wing span is too small for their robust body shapes.

I’m not sure how they extract pollen from flowers or what kind of poison is in their stingers either. I’ve been stung, but I don’t know how to explain it.

I know bird’s bones are hollow, which allows them to be lighter, but I’m not sure how they produce white or red blood cells – or whatever human bone marrow produces.

I’ve had sex four times because I have four kids. At least, that’s what my daughter probably thinks now. And, since my wife is pregnant, I’ve been “lucky” five times, but I still don’t really understand it. The sperm and the egg and the books about gestation all amaze me. Did you know the uterus expands 1,000 times its normal size to house a growing embryo? Did you know that babies in the womb drink the liquid they live in, and subsequently their own urine? That liquid is recreated every so often, and the urine doesn't hurt them.

We all lived in liquid and we didn’t even have gills! One year of our lives were upsidedown in a sealed up kangaroo-like marsupial pouch! I don’t get it. I can’t explain it. I’m really not that smart. None of us are, really. Even the most brilliant scientists cannot recreate what God has. So, I’ll just go on teaching my kids about things I know very little, but enough to get me by. Boy, do I have them fooled.

Adult conversation is interesting. Consider the conversation we had last week in our home when a couple we know came to visit. He’s an OB/GYN. We all spoke rather bluntly about topics that would otherwise be off-limits. It was interested, and…well…downright, weird. But I believe any topic can be discussed maturely. I wasn’t really fearful of telling my kids about the birds or the bees. I told them what I knew, which as mentioned, isn’t very much: the birds live in nests and the bees live in hives. End of story.

But here’s something I do know. I know how a young boy supposed to pee standing up. While I was in Iraq, my wife – bless her soul – had our four-year-old drop his pants and instead of holding and shaking the dew from his blade of grass, she had him let it fly uncontrollably. Afterwards, he smacks his posterior until his tiny buns are bright red, all in an effort to relieve the dribble. “What are you doing?” I asked astonished the first time I witnessed it. “Who taught you that?”

“Mommy,” he replied.

“Well, boys aren’t supposed to do that.” Then I recalled our older son when he was learning to use the toilet standing up. I had to break him of the habit of wanting to use toilet paper to wipe his little thing. What the…?

Well, I’m glad I’m home, and it’s nice to have our youngest potty trained. Her Dora the Explorer panties are her favorite. It makes me think that I should get some boxer shorts with black and yellow-striped honey bees all over them. We’re all just big kids anyway, right?

PS I'm a big kid. My wife has to put up with me. As to not embarrass her, in her defense, our youngest was flinging and shaking, marking his territory on the ceiling and the toothbrushes on the counter. So there is a method to the madness.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Jeff, Glad to have found you and see you're OK... Lance Klein..