Babes About Town – Before Sperm Met Egg

One more time I welcome into Mari’s World the lovely Uju from Babes About Town who also wrote here which in case you missed please go back for a quick read as it’s so so true and brilliant advice! Here she tackles another one of those difficult questions children fire at you when you’re least expecting. Enjoy!

Before Sperm Met Egg

My eldest, then 4, was recovering from chicken pox. One day at breakfast, Ezra asked (or rather, told) me, ‘Mummy, when you were a baby you had chicken pox too.’

No, I replied, I had chicken pox as a young girl.

‘And where was Jed?’


‘Where was Jed when you were a girl? Was he in your tummy?’

Jed wasn’t around yet, I informed him. ‘You know that Jed was only born last year. Also I hadn’t met your daddy yet so of course there was no Jed.’

Ezra’s spoon hovered over his cereal bowl.

‘So where was he?’

The subtext was clear. And where was I? My armpits prickled. I could see where this was leading. It’s the metaphysical investigation, the ultimate unanswerable: Where did I come from? Who was I before you and daddy made me?

When you grow up and especially when you’re approaching middle age, it’s hard not to stop and wonder sometimes if there’s life after death. But the equal mystery of life before birth haunts less until you have a four-year-old, cereal spoon poised, quizzing you about his beginnings. And this goes way deeper than the birds and the bees.

Should I follow the religious route and preach about Jed’s heavenly origins? Should I tell a fairytale of some pre-birth wonderland filled with bouncing babies waiting to be delivered to their parents?

‘Jed was in my heart,’ I said, feeling rather clever. I prepared myself to explain the statement but Ezra looked unconvinced.

‘Where do you think Jed was?’ I asked.

‘Jed was in your tummy,’ Ezra said emphatically, spooning another mouthful from his bowl.

Hmm, I replied. Better leave it at that for now because I guess partly (you could say 50 percent) he’s right.

Plus I didn’t have the nerve to start getting into how, when and why Jed wound up in my tummy.

I hadn’t even had a cup of tea yet.

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