14. The Ugly Baby Deity Longevity

About a year later after they married,  Yu-Wen happened to be in favor of sour food. She became lazy and easy to get tired when doing her daily housework. The doctor announced that Yu Wen was pregnant!

What a great and joyful news for the Ho family! Dz Yun’s parents were expecting their very first born grandchild! Dz Yun’s father mailed two sets of books to his daughter-in-law:  “Fetation” and ” How to nourishing and bringing up a baby”. These two sets of books not only brought Yu Wen love they also brought new knowledge that all she needed. Without these books, Yu-Wen would never know what should she do to bring up her very first baby.

Before Yu Wen married, her father was teasing her and said:”If you married Dz Yun. you should have many children!”

“Why?” Yu Wen’s father baffled her.

     “My foolish child! Don’t you see, I’m a Mongolian, your mother is a Manchurian and your husband-to-be is a Han. There are five big races in China: Hans, Manchus, Mongolians, Huis, and Tibetans. There will be three races in your family. It was said the second generations of this kind of families, should be very bright!”

Now it’s really going to be happening! Yu-Wen was worried and scared. No adults around her. Nowhere to get Won Ma. Whom should she go for help?  From the books that her father-in-law sent her, Yu-Wen found all her answers.

It could be because this was the first pregnancy for Yu Wen. Without any experience, no advice. She only carried the fetus less than seven months.  The premature baby was thin and tiny! Not ready to be dropped into the world. She had a head as a shrank deity of longevity. But much older!  On her baldhead and over her face there were full of wrinkles.  Her fingers and toes were so skinny and they looked awfully long. Yu-Wen couldn’t be sure whether there were five or fewer fingers or toes on each hand and foot. Many times when nobody was around she would be picked up one tiny hand or foot to count over and over again.

Mrs. Lyan heard that her daughter just had a pregnancy baby.  She rushed to the hospital to see them. When she saw such an ugly old deity of longevity granddaughter, Mrs. Lyan was very disappointed.  She suggested to Yu Wen:

“How about exchange a better-looking one? Today on my way here at the Nursery, I saw an abandoned baby girl as old as this ugly being. The nurse said her mother was a student at Pei-Jing University who ran away a few days later after the baby was born. That baby girl I saw, has beautiful black hair, big eyes, and a small mouth. She’ll become a beauty someday. Anyway, that’s an unwanted child, why don’t you exchange them?” Mrs. Lyan said seriously.

Yu-Wen was so frightened.  No matter how ugly the baby was, that was her very own flesh and blood. That was her daughter!

Ever since that moment she heard what her mother had said, She was so scared!  She would never let the baby out of her sight.  She was afraid that her mother may stealthily exchange her baby.

Dz Yun named their first born girl You Wen to honor his sweetheart. You Wen means Yu Wen Junior!

You Wen, this a premature baby. She was unusually small! At home, everyone called her Syau Wen as a nickname,  which means “Little Tiny Wen”.

Syau Wen was born on a summer day in 1963.  The weather was awfully hot. But Syau Wen’s body temperature was always low. There was no incubator at those days. From ” How to Nourishing and Bringing Up A Baby” Yu Wen learned how to keep her tiny baby warm and safe.

She put lots of unused premature bab on a piece of wood board. Rapped up with a new clean cloth. Before Yu Wen bundled Syau Wen up with a blanket, she placed Syau Wen in between of two layers of unused cotton, then put the bundle on the rapped board.  The bundle was secured on the board,

  • Unused cotton* is warmer than the used one. Besides it’s clean, no harmful germs.

Actually to put Syau Wen on a piece of board was not only could keep her warm, it kept her safe in one piece. Syau Wen was born before she was fully grown. Her bones and skeleton were not well enough connected yet. It seemed if there is just the slightest shake could cause the bones scattered! When she was on the board she will not be shaken at all.

This poor little girl didn’t even know how to suck! Each time when it was time to feed her, Yu-Wen had to put some milk into an eye drop suction tube. Then open her baby’s mouth to drop one drop of milk at a time. Waited until that one drop was completed swallowed. Then drop the next drop. If accidentally dropped two drops into Syau Wen’s mouth, it could chock Syau Wen and she would throw up all the milk she had swallowed. All the hard work was in vain. She had to start from the beginning again.

From no experience at all only based on those two sets of books, Yu-Wen made it. She and Syau Wen went through the hottest days in summer and bed hygienic condition. Even the doctors would not sure that a baby like Syau Wen could be survived. Syau Wen kept on growing safely. It was a miracle to Yu Wen. Her heart was filled with thanksgiving to heaven and the people around her.  On top of all the worried was her baby could be exchanged by her mother. Many timed she woke up at midnight to check and make sure if her “tiny old deity of longevity” was OK!

–to be continued.

  1. Smallpox vaccine and The  Deadly Enteritis–  is on the way
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C-6 The First Time Being A Mother–part one–

–Everlasting Blossoms–

Dz Yun had a job as a teacher before they married. After his honeymoon he went back to work. One day Yu Wen was alone at home sitting in the wicker chair enjoying the embroidered phoenix and the peony on the window curtain. She was very much appreciated their harmonious colors and the exquisite needle work.

“That’s right! I’m going to buy some cloth with the same color as the curtain. I’ll make a table cloth and embroider the phoenix and peony on it.”

Suddenly there was someone knocking on the door. A stranger stood at the door way. And said: “Please, may I ask is Mrs. Ho home?”

Yu Wen heard that he was asking for “Mrs. Ho”. She said to herself: “My mother-in-law is at Ho-Nan, which is so far away. Why is he asking for her over here?” She was just about to say: “Mrs. Ho doesn’t live here.” Then she realized she is “the” Mrs. Ho!

That stranger told Yu Wen that he is coming to collect the window curtains . Today is the due day for the one month rent.

While Yu Wen was watching the stranger taking those beautiful curtains down from the windows, optimistic Yu Wen thought:”Good! It save all my trouble to look for the right kind of cloth for a tablecloth, and it saved the money too! When there were no curtains on the window, the room looks brighter.”

While she was thinking about what had just happened, Yu Wen laughed. She could never imagine that there were even curtains for rent. The world full of all kinds of business. All you need is hard working, you can always make a living. You would never be starved.

At the beginning of Yu Wen’s married life. She didn’t know how to cook. All she knew was to make dumplings. Back home, at each Chinese New Year Eve all the women in the house hood, old or young, all should go to the kitchen to help to make dumplings. From making the dough, preparing the stuffing for the dumplings, to roll out the dumpling rappers with small roller , rape the stuffing and boil them. At her new home, you would see dumplings on the table almost every day! When Dz Yun was teaching at school, Yu Wen usually buy some steamed buns(with no stuffing). She smashed the garlic and mixed them with salt and sesames oil. Dipped the steamed bun into the smashed garlic and eat. The smashed garlic became a delicious dish on their dining table. But Yu Wen never knew that garlic would played a very important role in saving her life. The garlic cured her Tuberculosis.

It was so many years later, Yu wen had a non-stopping coughing. After the X Ray the doctor told Yu Wen it was the bronchitis which caused the coughing. Also the doctor asked Yu Wen if she had Tuberculosis in th past? Because he found some calcified spots on her lung. But what kind of medication did she take? The doctor’s questions reminded her that was the garlic which saved her.

About one year later after they married, Yu Wen happened to be in favor of sour food. She became lazy and easy to get tired when doing her daily house work. The doctor announced that Yu Wen was pregnant! What a great and joyful news for the Ho family! Dz Yun’s parents was expecting the first born grandchild! Dz Yun’s father mailed two sets of books to his daughter-in-law: “Fetation” and ” How to nourishing and bringing up a baby”. These two sets of books not only brought Yu Wen love they also brought new knowledge that all she needed. Without these books Yu Wen would never know what should she do to bring up her very first baby.

Before Yu Wen married Dz Yun , her father was teasing her, and said:”You should have many children!”

“Why?”

“My foolish child! Don’t you see, I’m a Mongolian, your mother is a Manchurian and you husband is a Han. There are five big races in China: Han, Manchu, Mongolian, Hui, Tibtan. In your family there will be three races. It was said the second generations of this kind of families, should be very bright!”

Now it’s really going to be happened! Yu Wen was scared. No adults around. Nowhere to get Won Ma. Whom should she go for help? From the books that her father-in-law sent her ,Yu Wen found all the answers.

It could be because this was the first pregnancy for Yu Wen, no experience, no advice. She only carried the fetus less than seven months. The premature slight baby was so tiny! She had a head as the deity of longevity. And a very old one! On her baldhead and over her face there were so many wrinkles. Her fingers and toes were so skinny and they looked awfully long. Yu Wen couldn’t be sure whether there were five or more on each hand and foot. Many times she picked them up and  counted over and over again.

–to be continued–