Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Prologue Gwyneth The story of my birth is like a movie continually playing in my head. My mother sat me down on her lap on my fifth birthday and braided my hair. “My sweet Gwen,” she used to call me. She would kiss my cheeks and love on me until I laughed uncontrollably. “Let me tell you about the day you were born.” I looked up at my mother's soft eyes and perfectly arched brows while she began to recite the story... “Get her out! Get her out now!” my mother screamed as she delivered me in a small African village in the heart of Cape Town ,South Africa. She lied on moist blankets that were made of tough fabric while four big bone African ladies held her down. The Full moon shined through the lopsided hut made of bamboo and spotlighted directly on my mother. She wasn’t supposed to give birth to me that day but I refused to stay inside her. Her hair was drenched in sweat as she clenched onto the ladies assisting her birth. The villagers were rhythmically dancing and singing ritualistic songs to help the unborn babies travel into the human world. “It hurts so bad!” she cried with her British accent. I had begun crowning when Bali the village nurse came over to deliver me. My mother gave me one final push and I was in Bali's arms. My tanned skin was covered in blood and my dirty blond hair soaked with bodily fluids. She told me that I came out with my eyes open and as quiet as a whisper. My mother had died a minute after giving birth to me before she had a chance to hold me in her arms. As I was entering the real world my mother was leaving it behind. The midwives noticed my mother's lifeless body and began screaming for Kalu, the resident medicine doctor. He rushed over to my mother as I was being carried away for cleaning. Kalu preformed an ancient ritual to bring her back from the dead. The drums began to beat louder and the chanting became a deadly rhythm that would open the door to the underworld. Kalu smoked a cigar and blew the white clouds over my mother’s dead body. He grabbed a sharp knife and sliced the middle of his palm as a sacrifice to his Gods. He poured his blood into a coconut shell filled with dandelions, exotic herbs and powdered egg shells. Kalu mixed up the ingredients while chanting with his followers while pouring the magic potion into my mother’s mouth. His long dark fingers covered her eyes as he started yelling to the dark night. “Bring her back and forever she will be indebted to you,” He said in his native tongue. All the life returned back into my mother body as he finished his words. Her legs began to flop around and her body looked like a fish out of water. Every one was quiet, waiting to see the miracle before them. It took five minutes for her body to relax and open her eyes. “You are Alive!” he smiled as he kissed her on the forehead. “Where's My baby,” She cried holding her arms out for me. She tried to get up but Kalu pressed her back down. “You are too weak. We shall bring the baby to you.” He motioned for the midwives to bring me over and they stared at her with disbelief. She told me I slept in her arms for twenty four hours straight because she didn’t want to lose me again. My fifth birthday was the last times I seen my mother.