Thursday, 8 October 2009

Mary's Life - Episode One

In 1988 the world saw the beginning of terrorism with planes crashing into buildings and suicide bombers killing innocent people of a different racial background. The Americans elected George Bush SR as their President, Pakistan got their first female Prime Minister and the US Navy blew up some Iranians over the Persian Gulf. Unlucky Iranians. On the third of December of this pivotal year, in somewhat small county town, a thirty-two year old mother of two went into labour.

For the rest of the world, the third of December was not a particularly special day. The editor of the Guardian newspaper may have been happy because it saw the launch of their new weekend magazine, aptly named ‘Weekend’. Other than this, it was a fairly regular day…

Back to the small county town…

The frantic father-to-be (again) grabbed the overnight bag that was waiting expectantly by the door and ushered his bulging, but beautiful wife, out of the house. They drove quickly (within the speed limit of course) to the Queen Elizabeth II Hospital where they were greeted by a doctor that strangely resembled a weasel. His elongated neck protruded from his shoulders and his ears twitched with anticipation. After much deliberation of where to go and of how much the doctor looked like a weasel, the expectant mother arrived in the delivery room. Surrounded by the doctor, nervous father and smiley midwife the mother experienced blistering contractions and the father experienced the bones in his hands gradually fracturing with the added bonus of ear drums bursting. An injury which still plagues him to this very day.

With a final push, the baby popped out. There I was, covered in a variety of gunky fluids, screaming my lungs out. Beaming faces looked down on me as I was passed to my exhausted yet ecstatic mother. I fell asleep in the incubator and my parents starred at the chubby child they had produced. I had been through an almost miscarriage, bean bag birth and an almost perfect delivery. My father telephoned the anxious grandparents who were waiting with my older sister, Anne and my older brother, Philip. When they heard they felt like they had just won a gold medal; excited and proud.

My mother and I stayed in the hospital for the night to make sure that I wasn’t missing any vital organs. Oh and so my mum could recover. Dad, also known as Tim, returned home so that the ancestral dudette (my grandmother) could have a break from looking after Anne and Philip. Years later when I ask Anne what she remembers from the time of my birth, all she can tell me is what she ate; spaghetti Bolognese. Typical. Everything relates to food. Always thinking about her stomach. My brother doesn’t remember much, he’s in a world of his own most of the time.
Although he did say that it was raining. Helpful.

Looking back at the photos, apart from thinking that my Mother's perm should have been outlawed, I think that my eyes were really big, like bug eyes. But I suppose I have the old Cypriot ancestry to thank for that. Thanks. According to dad, Anne and Philip were really happy to see me, their new baby sister. All Anne said was “Can I hold her yet?! Can I?! Please…” This was continually repeated, even when she was holding me. Of course, she doesn’t remember this. Probably because it didn’t have anything to do with food.

Written by Mary, aged 16 as part of English GCSE creative writing coursework

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