02 March 2007

Stumpy! Stumpy! (Imagine Brando screaming that.)

Let's all take a thankful moment for the stumpy.

This Australian skink sacrificially loves her babies, carrying them until they weigh "on average, 35 percent of the mother's body weight," which is like a human birthing a seven-year-old. Obviously, the mother has trouble breathing, eating, and moving toward the end of gestation, making predator evasion difficult and general living uncomfortable.

And I thought I was swollen at 9 months. Give me stretch marks any day just so Noel comes out at 7 pounds, 13 ounces, rather than the weight and size of Anna Kate. Bigger, really, but I can't think of an actual seven-year-old at the moment.

The creation can teach us much about perseverance and longsuffering, but there is something particularly peculiar about the way God makes new creatures that generally seems rather instructive to me. At the very least, much gratitude wells up in this heart for the stumpy and for the radically different process that is human birth. I'm glad stumpy females go to so much trouble to make new stumpies, unwittingly but nevertheless consistently risking themselves for reproduction. But I'm also glad that it's less trouble for human females to make new humans.

7 comments:

rachel hood said...

love the post...where did you hear about Australian skinks?

Jen Strange said...

A colleague (same one who hosted the psych class mentioned earlier) emailed this to me and the other moms who visited her class. . . .

Lin said...

That's pretty wild. Can you imagine if we had to carry around 45+ pound babies???? Makes you appreciate the 7 pounders. :)

Jen Strange said...

45 pounds. My hips ache at the suggestion.

A friend of mine gave birth to a 9-pound 11-ouncer last weekend, and that seemed big. But 45 pounds? Oy.

Rebekah said...

Okay Jen, we need some new material :)

Shannon said...

I was thinking about this today... I'm amazed she doesn't have little servant skinks running around doing her bidding while she's that preggers. If I looked that big & bad, I'd really hope to have something around to help out....

Jen Strange said...

Servant skinks. . . . You should work on suggesting that to the Animal kingdom.