These are questions that keep me up at night. So, I decided to investigate, a conversation with my mother was the logical starting point. I called her, long-distance, after a little over a year. Hello, mother, I hope you are well, can you please inform me on why and if my feet have always been ice-cold? There was a long pause and a muffled !@*$ (we had not last parted on good terms) before she re-gained composure and proceeded to tell me the story of my conception, gestation, and birth. These would turn out to be the missing pieces in a lifelong feeling of oddness and uneasiness.
She had been a young mother, a kind and gentile one, providing me with food, shelter and love, but the question of my father’s identity had always been a mystery to me. She had been a pearl finder, swimming off the edge of the cliffs, diving into deep, dark waters, in search of clams to crack. The cold water, rigorous exercise and daily sun exposure gave her the appearance of a glistening goddess. All the men, women and children in the small town would watch her come out of the water and speculate on how she would take as her consort.
She kept to herself, and there was no news of any suiters. A lonely life, swimming all day, and then opening and cleaning shells in her small cabin by night. One foggy winter’s morning, when even the fishing boats did not dare to brave the sea, she took to the waters.
She was not under for long before something caught a hold of her leg, it twisted and pulled but it did so with the slightest touch, enticing her to stay and play. Many times she had encountered danger, and had not hesitated to pull out her trusted knife and defend herself. This time was different, with immense pleasure she gave herself and her last breath willingly to the stranger.
The octopus lover was not only gentile and wise, he was highly fertile as well, and by spring she found herself with child(s). They had been living in an underwater cave and when the pains of labour began he was by her side, wrapped lovingly around her wrists, ankles and forehead all at once. With only a few contractions I was born, human, pink, bloodied and gasping for air. My twin brother came out behind me totally adapt to the subaquatic environment and attached himself around our mother.
To be continued…!