New towns make me antsy. I have just been here a day and I am a little restless. It might be the way I have to learn everything all over again. The roads, the streets, the vehicles, the acceptable prices for everything, the places I need to be at.
Right now I am making my way to the county hospital. It is a Sunday and I am not sure I will get any service but I might as well know where everything is for the next time I come here.
After a lot of,where is…? How do I get to..? Can you tell me how I …? I finally get where I am going and a sturdy middle aged woman greets me.
“What do you want?” She questions in Swahili over the noise of crying babies.
“To review my contraceptive method,” I tell her wondering why the mother and child health and family planning offices are in the same department. I mean, I get why but I still question it.
She asks which one I am currently using and the answer is condoms, currently. She then asks why I can’t continue using that one and if I am married in the same breath and I am saved from what would be the sorriest excuse in the history of those.
“Yes,” I answer to the latter and my heart beats a little too fast. I am a terrible on the spot liar and I am afraid she can tell. And that is not just a technical half truth kind of lie. It is the several steps from the truth kind of lie. The I am seriously single kind.
Because I am, seriously single. I just happen to have moved in with my current whatever they are called in my situation and I need a better method to maintain my child free status. It is a long and complicated tale(not really) and the generation gap is an issue already so instead I lie.
“My husband and I have just moved here actually, we are still new to town,” I tell her (technically a half truth) and we proceed to talk about our work and previous abodes.
Any kids? Negative. Why don’t you just give birth? I don’t have the heart to tell her I don’t want any kids ever so I just smile.
She must get the hint because she goes over the methods with me, each one sounding worse than the last. I am seriously considering why I can’t go on using the method I am currently using before I remember that late night cuddles aren’t just late night cuddles anymore and the thought of an accident is enough to give me a heart attack.
After a long comprehensive talk that helps me understand the rates of accidental pregnancy in the country, I leave. Hoping to come back during a weekday when I can get access to the services I require. Maybe I can convince a drunk doctor to just remove the whole uterus? I am not so sure I need it.
If only wishes were horses…