My daughter was born on a particularly hot summers day. I remember having the windows wide open in the birthing suite and being asked to keep the noise down so as not to disturb the other patients, especially those who also had their windows open and could hear me howling many floors away.
Seven days after her birth we held a traditional Nigerian Naming Ceremony, which more than anything was a chance to have our daughter blessed by the family elders (they all give her a name!) and introduce her to the family. Now seven days from her birth was possibly even hotter than her birthday. That being said, she was dressed in a beautiful silk dress from Monsoon and then wrapped up in a gorgeously soft blanket because all of my aunts were scared she’d catch a chill. I spent half the day taking the blanket off my poor sweaty child and they spent half the day wrapping it back around her! No matter what I said to try and convince them that my little girl was hot, they wouldn’t believe me and instead insisted she was too young to get hot.
I was so happy when the community midwife visited a few days later and immediately stripped missy down to her nappy and told me it was fine to keep her that way! Phew, one point to the young modern mum!
We were having a chat at work about babies and some of the things we take for old wives’ tales but that our family members sometimes take for gospel, you know those little nuggets of ‘wisdom’ they may try to impart on us that we just think are plain absurd? Maybe you actually believe in some yourself and feel they do not deserve to be in the list of old wives tales? Thank you to my work colleague, twitter friends and family for sharing your favourites with me!
Sex / gender old wives’ tales
Eating lots of carrots will make you have a boy
Eating lots of yams will give you twins
Doing a hand stand after sex will help you get pregnant
Birth /pregnancy old wives’ tales
Putting a knife under your bed will cut through the pain
Count the nodules on the placenta to make sure it is all removed. There should be one node for every month you were pregnant.
The more severe heartburn you have during pregnancy, the more hair the baby will have
Children’s old wives’ tales
Swearing in front of your child will give him/her tourettes
Tickling a baby’s feet will give him/her a stutter
Sitting too close to the TV will give you square eyes
Making a silly face when the wind changes will make it stay that way
Do you have any old wives’ tales or traditions to add to the list? I found it interesting compiling this list as I hadn’t heard of some of them before. I can see how some of these may serve a purpose and although they may not be true, perhaps they hold a cautionary measure or some level of truth to them? Sitting too close to the tv may not give you square eyes but too much television isn’t good for a child’s development, etc.
So what do you think?