My colleague Kate will go to hell. Forget that thing called purgatory, where we are told after one dies, their soul gather in some lounge to listen to Jazz music and sip fortified holy wine as they await the Second Coming. For Kate, she will go straight to hell immediately she dies, and this is why.
Early last year, as her workmates, we were super gracious with her. You see, some sugar daddy had send her into the family way, and we sucked in all her pregnancy-related tantrums. In any case, being her first time of not only going to be a mother, but a single mother at that, we did cut her some slack, endured her tantrums, her cravings, mood swings and everything else she threw at us, all in the name of her pregnancy.
In fact, some of us were banned from wearing certain cologne, while others like Wafula, the office messenger were banned from eating roasted maize in the office. Pauline, our sexy receptionist was banned from exposing too much of her oily cleavage. Apparently, the sight of her cleavage, we are told kinda irritated the mood of the baby. Prissy, the ever-confused intern was prohibited from eating french fries purchased from certain outlets.
What was more irritating for us was Kate’s cravings. Ok, for what is worth, we get it. Most pregnant women usually have certain cravings, taste and preferences. No big deal about that. Its normal. Its natural. And since, no one wants a child born already pissed off at the world coz they were denied certain craves, mostly we obliged with Kate. We mostly gave her what she craved. Be it a red pen, a ruler, airtime or Paprika ladies shoes.
In my few years of interactions with pregnant women, I understand that mostly the cravings are normal things that can HUMANLY be accessed. This may range from craving for very specific things, and from very specific places. Such as a black forest cake dipped into strawberry ice cream from Galitos, chips and fish from Munyiri’s, or sparkling bottled water from Naivas Supermarket. I am yet to hear, for instance a woman in my village craving for a pizza, or a Ferrari. They normally crave for things locally available like African indigenous vegetables, fermented porridge and the like.
However, when one pushes to extraordinary and completely ridiculous levels this craving thing, then society has a problem. Kate was such. In fact, she’s what I would call a pregnant diva. Her cravings were simply out of this world. In case you are curious, her cravings, ranged from Louis Vuitton bags, an iPhone 6, and of course her favourite Bikini Margarita cocktail garnished with lemon, carrot, celery, and pitted manzanilla olives, to name but a few. She simply made being pregnant look like a life-sentence, a curse, a burden, an inconvenience and something very evil. She made everyone around her extremely uncomfortable, irritated and moody. She treated everyone as if they were responsible for her current status. It’s like it was everyone’s fault that she got pregnant. I would even go further to state publicly that she made everyone hate the very idea of pregnancy.
Kate somehow managed to make us feel like we were all pregnant in the office. Everything revolved around her. Meeting times had to revolve around her mood. Before one sneezed, they had to look over their shoulders, lest they be accused of traumatising the unborn child. We made sacrifices for her, until she finally popped out the little rascal. In fact, we did throw a bash in the office the day she delivered, in the guise of celebrating my birthday. Finally we could have our peace back. Wear our favourite colognes, and curse when the lights go off, without being reminded that sijui we are teaching the baby in her tummy bad manners.
UNFORTUNATELY, our joy seemed to be short-lived. When we reported back to the office early this year, rumour began going round that Kate was expecting her second rascal. It was further rumoured that a certain young blood, driving a noisy blue jalopy was the one who enjoyed the joy of sending her into motherhood. Of course, this time round, we are so prepared for those tantrums. For the record, we will still make sacrifices for her and be all nice. We will understand her condition, cravings and mood swings.
HOWEVER (with capital letters), one thing we are not prepared to do is for her to turn our lives again into a living hell on account of her pregnancy. Our freedom of expression, movement, association, and happiness is guaranteed in the Constitution and in the Good Book, and we are not going to let some little rascal conceived in pure sin, or an immoral, self-centred mother take it away from us. Wafula has the right to eat roasted maize. Pauline has the right to show us her oily cleavage and juicy thighs, all she wants. Prissy has the right to devour soggy quarter chicken and chips from any outlet her bank account can allow. Jimmy has the right to drink herbal tea in the office, and certainly I have the right to curse when the lights go off.
I don’t know about you, but I come from the school of thought where I believe, despite the challenges, cravings and moods associated with it, over and above, pregnancy is a beautiful thing that needs to be celebrated and cherished, and not endured and tolerated. How some women turn out to be the devil’s favourite demons and annoying monsters is simply beyond my comprehension. I mean, we have women acting as if they are the first human beings to get pregnant. They want to be accorded super-special treatment, they want everyone to stop what they are doing and pay homage and attention, and constantly heap them with unending attention, praise and adoration.
For crying out loud, sweetheart, suck it up, you aren’t the first and neither will you be the last to be pregnant. And, if you are too posh to be pregnant, how about you keep your legs together, once and forever!