Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Fah-HEE-Nah Monologues

Fah-HEE-nah. That's how you say it in spanish. You know, the V-word. For some reason, I just can't bring myself to write it here. I can write penis. See, I did it, but I just can't write the v-word, unless it's a phonetically spelled version of the spanish word. If I were to actually write it out in spanish, it would be spelled the same as in english, I believe. Okay, since we are going to talk about Fah-HEE-nahs, I just have to make sure there are no men from my ward reading this post. In case you aren't familiar with the term "ward", a ward is a group of Mormons living in the same geographical area who attend the same church service each Sunday. If I say someone is in my church, that means that they are one of 13.5 million Mormons throughout the world, so you see, that is very different from saying someone is in my ward. I really don't know why any man in my ward would be reading my blog, that would just be weird, but just in case you are a man in my ward reading my blog, can you just leave? Like now? Here, you can go read THIS. Buh-bye. (John, you can stay, but you could go read that, too, later... if you want, not that you need to, but you know, just for fun.)

Okay, now let's talk about what it's like to visit the OB/GYN in Mexico!

First there is the babysitting that has to be arranged. Since the babies both had hand, foot and mouth disease, we really couldn't leave them with anyone, so guess what? They got to come with us! So did the 3-year-old boy! Had it been safe for me to drive alone to the big town, John would have stayed home to babysit, but because of repeated robbery and kidnapping attempts, no one drives alone anymore.

Because it was nap time, John asked his sister if she could come along to simply sit in the car with the babies as they slept while we went into our appointment. Yes, that's what sisters do, and she did. Here are the babies 3 minutes are leaving our carport...


As we drove up to the outskirts of the big town, I frantically realized I hadn't brought anything with me to eat. I have to have something in my stomach at least every two hours to quell the nausea, so we would have to stop before seeing the OB. We stopped at a paleteria, a place that specializes in frozen fruit popsicles and they are delicious...


Here is John coming out of the paleteria, having faithfully purchased my two bags of Doritos, not Tostitos, and my bottle of mineral water, or agua mineral.


Here's the clinic where my doctor is...


I had never met him before, so I was a bit apprehensive about how the visit would go, but after seeing the waiting room, I was relieved at the pristine conditions of my surroundings...


I didn't actually photograph anything that went on in the office, as, again, I'd never met my doctor and I didn't want him to freak out. Doctors are often targets of extortion and I didn't want to scare him by taking photographs of him or his office. I'm considerate that way.

The first thing I said to him was, "Yo hablo poquito espanol." and I made my thumb and forefinger almost touch together to show the universal sign of "a little". With that, he began firing off questions in spanish, looking at me and me only, as I stumbled to answer them. About every three questions I would turn to John for translation, but in general, I didn't do too bad. I was impressed that he made it a point to look to me for every answer rather than my fluent, spanish-speaking husband.

After the questioning, we all went into the examination room, along with his nurse and he began the ultrasound. The first thing he said was, "Hay uno." meaning, there's one. John was VERY relieved, but I was slightly disappointed. My mother and I had always talked about how boring it would be to be pregnant with only one after having the twins, but, at least I can look forward to the fact that I won't have to endure the grueling first year with twins again!

During the ultrasound, he measured and counted heartbeats and even pressed down on my uterus to make the baby move. When he did that, it kicked and wiggled it's hands so cutely and I said, "Ay, que chula", which means, oh, she's so cute. If I would have said "que chulo", that would have meant that I was referring to a boy, but because I'm like 100% positive it's a girl, I said "chula".

That's when I learned the word fah-HEE-nah. Not hers...mine. He pointed to a long tunnel-like area on the ultrasound and told John that that was my fah-HEE-nah. He referred to it again later and for some reason, it made me really uncomfortable. As my sister with the Ph.D. pointed out, that is probably the least invasive way anyone could see my fah-HEE-nah ever, so she couldn't understand why it would bother me. I agreed with her wisdom, but still. Just weird to have two men looking at your fah-HEE-nah on a big screen TV.

The good news was that he said I could deliver naturally after having the twins via c-section and that there was no reason I needed to eat meat during my pregnancy, just very little sugar, as I'd had gestational diabetes during previous pregnancies. Cool! I liked him!

After we left the office, our truck was gone because John's sister had had to drive it around the block to keep the babies asleep. We were so grateful to her for the fact that we didn't have to take all three into the visit! Thank you again, M_____!

Since it was after two, and neither John nor I had had lunch, we decided to stop at the torta place. A torta is a sandwich made on a fresh bun with pork, sweet cream, tomatoes and avocadoes. I usually get extra avocados instead of meat, but since my body's been craving meat, I opted for chicken instead of pork. The torta place has a drive-through, which means that you just park in a line in the road next to the store, like so...


Here's the torta place...


Sitting on the ground next to the torta place was a young Tarahumara girl. The Tarahumaras are an ethnic group here in Northern Mexico indigenous to this area. All the women wear colorful, full dresses and they are very poor. Here is me giving the girl some change...


While I waited in the truck in the street for the tortas, John, his sister and the 3-year-old boy went into the "Dulceria" or candy store next door to purchase a pinata and candy for a party we were having for some twin friends that evening. Here is the back of my sexy sister-in-law going in to the dulceria...


I could only be so lucky to look that good when I'm her age :) . Actually, I have no hope of that, because I don't look anywhere near that good now, so nevermind.

Here they are, having purchased the pinata and said candy...


...and here is the torta guy finally having brought us our tortas and coming back for the tip...


John and his sister then had to go to the grocery store, so again, I waited in the truck with the sleeping baby while they went in. Twin A had woken up by this time, so they took him and the 3-year-old boy in.

I had been trying during the whole trip to get a photo for you, my faithful reader, of a special ethnic (that's probably not the right word) group of people called the Mennonites. I wasn't sure if they were into having their pictures taken because they're kind of like the Amish, so I had to do it in a clandestine fashion, because again, I don't want to make anyone feel uncomfortable. I'm just considerate that way. The following is the best shot I got, through the truck windshield...


The women all wear old-fashioned dresses make from seemingly the same pattern, and the mean always wear dark blue denim overalls. They are of German decent, as you can see from the bleach-blond hair of their little boy in the cart. They speak a form of altered German, called "low" German, and many speak spanish, english and/or "high" German, as is spoken in Germany. Many of them do not believe in using modern technology such as electricity and cars, but this couple got into their truck, so I guess they were of a more progressive group. Incidentally, we, as Mormons, went to one of their churches one sunday to sing Christmas carols for them and as we were all mingling outside after the services, I noticed some women talking to the 3-year-old boy in low German. When he looked at them with blank stares while we walked up smiling, they said, "Oh, we're sorry! We thought he was one of us!" See, look, he doesn't look all too different from the above-pictured boy in the cart with the Mennonites...


On the drive home, we saw various merchants selling produce, such as corn from a van...


...and peaches from under a tree...


(I'm glad they had that shade of a little tree.)

After 30 minutes of driving, we finally arrived to the little valley we call home...


The large white building on the right is a Mormon temple, a very special place of worship different from a regular chapel and we are so grateful to have one in our tiny community.

So there you have it...how it is to visit the OB/GYN in Mexico! Thanks for listening.

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34 comments:

Jes said...

I don't think I could handle living in town (Mexico or any other large town), but the photo of your drive home is absolutely gorgeous...a wonderful treat after visiting the doctor for the first time! The temple just shines through the landscape doesn't it?!

Mom2my9 @ 11th Heaven said...

Jes, fortunately the town where I actually live is very small. We have to go to the "big" town for things like doctor's appointments and grocery shopping, but I LOVE the small town we can call home! Yes, I especially love how the temple stands out, too!

The Rudy Family said...

Wow you are very brave. I just started visiting your blog so I don't know why you are in Mexico but wow. I could never do that. Okay never say never but really wow! Thank goodness you have family there.
Brandie

Melinda said...

What an experience. Ok the talk about tortas totally got my stomach growling. I love them!! Hope the Dr. continues to be good. Thanks for sharing your experience.

Fisher Fam said...

I found your blog somehow and LOVE that you are living in Mexico!! It's so where I want to be! I actually spent time, I think, in your town about 7 years ago for a teaching experience, it was an amazing place and the temple was truly beautiful. Good luck with the new baby and thanks for the humorous posting about mommy stuff - it makes me laugh when I feel like I have it bad :)

Anonymous said...

Well....... you were WAY more focused on your Va HEE Nah that I was. I was oblivious to the whole thing. All I saw was a little indistinguishable blurry thing, that is supposed to be our next baby, moving around on the screen.........

Momza said...

Loved the trip! SO very interesting!

Eileen Astels Watson said...

I've got to agree, that's got to be the least evasive way!!

Lucy and Ethel said...

What a fun day... for the rest of us, anyway :)

Lucy

Anonymous said...

I'm a boy and I read it. Sorry. But I'm delivering babies right now in my OB/Gyn rotation, so I'm qualified. And I agree with your doc, you're definitely a candidate for VBAC. Sorry your Fah-hee-nah was on big-screen TV. Tro

The Farmer's Wife said...

LOVE the post! You know, when I live my life it doesn't seem strange....but when you write about it, it seems strange, or entertaining atleast. Not because you are writing...just because it is what it is....ha! I am going to trust your instinct and call the chula a girl too! Hugs!

Mom2my9 @ 11th Heaven said...

I agree, FW, it seems normal to us, but when you really lay it all out there, it's definitely a different experience from what more Americans have! I'd say we're pretty lucky!

RhondaLue said...

I think it's hilarious that he pointed out your fah-hee-nah on the ultrasound. I don't think anyone's ever extended that courtesy to me!

Oh my goodness, that dulceria brings back memories! We always wanted to get a pinata while we were there!

Ok what's really funny is that my daughter has a pic of the Torta place and there is a girl sitting in the exact same place that looks like the one in your pic. Maybe they're related!! Man I wish you could pack me up a few tortas and send 'em my way. I miss that place.

May your pregnancy go smoothly!

KrustyTheCat said...

Wow, how cool that you live in Mexico. Did you move there from the states, or have you been there for a long time? I find this fascinating!! How hard is it living there compared to living in the US?

Mom2my9 @ 11th Heaven said...

Krusty, to answer your question, the long answers are here...

http://rtheyallyours.blogspot.com/2009/08/this-is-my-life.html

and here...

http://theblogfrog.com/psearch/ViewThread.aspx?view=last&threadID=1968&blogID=117556

The short answer is that we have lived here for two years and while we miss Walmart, nice movie theaters and my mom, we love the people, the culture, and what our kids can learn from living in a foreign country. Thank you so much for asking!

Lydia said...

After having two kids in Germany i am always intersted in how things are in different countrys. thanks

Mom2my9 @ 11th Heaven said...

Lydia, I had a baby in Germany, too! Great experience, and certainly very different from Mexico!

alessandra said...

Thank you for let me spend a day in Mexico with you and family, nice virtual trip.

Bethany Cox said...

VAGINA!!
VAGINA!!
VAGINA!!
VAGINA!!
VAGINA!!
VAGINA!!

Anonymous said...

We have Mennonites in Montana and tourists often want to take photos. I've noticed that most don't mind as long as they are asked and the photo-takers aren't running along snapping pictures of the children (although I think that might be creepy to anyone). All I have met have been extremely gracious and wonderful people and they are such technologically advanced and precise farmers that they have the most amazing produce out there.

Christine said...

Totally loved the pictures of the paleteria, dulceria and torta shop. Yummy goodness from one of my favorite locations. Love the picture coming through the dugway. That screams "home" to me!

Amanda B. said...

I found this little glimpse into your culture fascinating! Thanks for sharing! :)

Aubrey said...

now you've gone and done it, i'm so homesick! (tell my mother, she'll be glad to hear it) I love seeing all the pictures! hope you are doing well. I remember when there was just one baby after having twins. I was a slight bit dissapointed too, but so grateful afterward. I hadn't realized how hard it was to have 2!

Adventures In Babywearing said...

Wow- first of all I'd be saying it exactly as you did here LOL and wow. I have a friend pregnant in Argentina. I know it's going to be all new! I wish you the best!

Steph

Nicki said...

This was a really neat OB visit....I am glad you like him, I can't imagine how hard it is when your still learning the language. We are hoping to spend 12 months in Canada and I am freaking out about stuff like Dr appointments etc and YEAH they speak English LOL....
I am so enjoying your blog and have encoraged a few friends of mine to come read all about you life ;o)

Patti's and Bobbi's Excellent Adventures said...

Well, if you can't say/write Vagina out loud, you could say
va-j-j. That seems to be the new "catch word" these days, thanks to Grey's Anatomy! "The Va-j-j Monologues." I kinda like that! Otherwise, it was a jam-packed day that started out as an interesting visit to your OB!!

Mark and Amy said...

I have to say that I am disappointed in you. You state that you felt the mennonites might not want their pictures taken...so you do it anyways. That is really lacking in respect..Why couldn't you have just asked to take the picture?

Mark and Amy said...

I also wanted to correct you...mennonites are not an ethnic group. They are a religious group.

Mom2my9 @ 11th Heaven said...

Mark and Amy, you are absolutely right. I was actually wondering if anyone was going to point that out. I certainly should have asked. True, also, that I wasn't sure exactly how to put what kind of group they are, thus the comment "ethnic (that's probably not the right word) group". Thanks for your astuteness! Hope I didn't drive you away by my insensitivity. :(

Anonymous said...

I think that you could call Mennonites an ethnic group or a religious group. One could decide to join that culture and participate in any of the religious activities and pastimes, or one could not do any of that, but still have been born into a Mennonite family and community and would be called a "Mennonite" until said person becomes of age. It could be compared to the Jews. The Jewish culture is both religious and ethnic, but could also be one or the other. I, however, believe that we should just refer to everyone as human, brother, or sister. There's no need to label and categorize each other.

Marilyn said...

Thank you so much for your visual tour. I love going to Mexico. I'm currently serving in a Spanish speaking branch here in the States and I so LOVE the people. Gracias!

Extraordinary Ordinary Life said...

I don't think Mennonites mind having their picture taken. They dress and cook similar to the Amish, but they use electronics and such. I actually read a Mennonite woman's blog and she posts pictures of her children and herself. http://homejoys.blogspot.com/

Cheryl B. said...

The irony is that the Amish broke off from the Mennonites claiming the Mennonites weren't strict enough. 'Most' mennonite 'orders' (their local church groups) do allow their members to own and operate cars, and have electricity in their homes, and plumbing. Seldom do Amish orders allow such. Some refer to their form of German launage as "Pennsivalinia Dutch" While it might have been better to get out and ask them before taking their picture, by doing it the way you did - you didn't put them on the spot or offend. You did NOT get clear enough pictures to identify them with ... Fair warning - the Amish believe that having their faces shown in a picture is like making a 'graven image' of themselves. So ... sides or backs only!!
Okay - on to the rest -
thanks for sharing the local area around about you. Beautiful, intriging.
Due to 'hormonal issues' I have been experiencing the last five or so years, I have had alot of 'dealings' with my "V" word 8-/ At one point in time I actually wrote the word in an email to family and friends in explaining about the hole in a tube which was releasing bowl pressure to there. Man did some people react negativily to me havin written that word!!! Oh my goodnes!!!
Youch!!
Glad you like your new Dr.. Liking or not liking one makes such an enormous difference!!!
And another girl ;-}

p.s. - can you tell I'm finally catching up on postings? ;-p

pps. - I wish these comment box's had spell check available!!!

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