February 26, 2009

Years in the Making

One of the most disturbing realities that Tymon has faced in our marriage is that I have kept my children's placentas in our freezer. What?! I' m sure your reaction is equally as alarmed as his. I mean who really does that?

It stems from years ago... approximately 15. I joined the speech and debate team my senior year of high school. I think I did it because I was pretty opinionated and of course, always right. Well, it turned out that I didn't really like debate. It was great for me to learn that there are often many sides to an issue and that my perspective and opinion can change in the course of a conversation. But I didn't eat it up like I thought I would. Debate nerds carry file boxes of information and evidence around. They organize everything so that they can pull out an expert opinion proving their point (which is both pro and con for any issue) and throw the hard cold facts out at their opponent. I'm just NOT organized like that.

Well, I was a little different sort of nerd. I wholeheartedly embraced the SPEECH TEAM. My friend Natalie and I performed a piece together entitled, Las Hermanas..."that means the sisters in Hispanic". It was written by Kathie Najimi and Mo Gaffney. It highlights a couple of elderly ladies who go back to college and find themselves in the Women's Studies department. At first they thought the courses would include a little macrame or something on child rearing or sewing. They found themselves knee deep in subjects they never knew existed. The end result is a beautiful spoof on individual identity, all things W O M Y N, and environmental consciousness. We took this 8 minute masterpiece to multiple tournaments and perfected our performance. We were successful and worked our two-woman show all the way to the State Tournament and won 3rd place. It was so amazing for me. I didn't compete so much in high school and here I was, a part of team that worked hard and experienced great results.


But we didn't stop there! We took it to the all school talent show. Ordinarily, literature is non-existent in a show full of song and dance. BUT we paved the way...and won first place. Ahhh, such memories... Thank you to Mrs. Bieragel, Mrs. Cedergreen and Ms. Chamberlain for all of your support and encouragement!

Our high school put on a school play every year and one of its great traditions was that each one had a square in the dressing room devoted to it. There were plays on those walls from decades past to decades present. Natalie and I viewed our accomplishments as SO GREAT that a day or two after we graduated, we snuck into the performing arts center and painted the wall to our hearts content. Technically, that would be considered graffitti or vandalism...but in all actuality, it was tradition preservation. Look at the shading there...just fabulous.

The two ladies go on a field trip with their classmates to see a performance by Holly and Molly at an environmentally conscious cafe.

Holly: Birth Cycle
Molly: I am born from you and am of you... of you, I am...
Holly: We give birth. We are birth, we are fetal, we are afterbirth. My placenta is yours and yours is mine.
Molly: So sister. Can I call you sister, or woman of my life or just me? Are you me? Are we, we?
Holly: Oh live in the great uterus of woman. Live in the walls. Cut the umbilical cord.
Both: No! Don't! It is there.
And there's more. I've found most of the text on the internet...but it's from a book I haven't read...only this one chapter. I'm not sure how the rest of the book goes. Suffice it to say that I have been caught up in placentas ever since. Natalie and I were in a thrift shop downtown and actually found a home perm kit that was made from placentas. It was dated...maybe 20 years old at the time...and it was supposed to be so good for your hair...minus the part about whose placenta was mixed in the kit.

In that time period, I did hear that somewhere in Oregon (I guess they've got some back woodsy folk there), the people all use placentas to plant trees. They dig a hole, pop the placenta in and then put the tree on top and fill the hole with dirt.


Last week, I took my placentas out of the freezer and Graeden and I planted trees. Graeden chose a cherry tree for his placenta. It's the coolest tree with 4 varieties of cherries grafted in it, including a couple of my favorites: Bing and Rainier. We chose Evan's placenta for the Pear tree (4 varieties of pears grafted in). Jocelyn shared her placenta with Jovana. They each got an apple tree. This photo shows our 4 trees with a spattering of snow from this morning...it's kind of hard to see them but they're there! We will split Elliott's placenta with his and Jett's plants. Elliott chose grapes and Jett chose a plum tree.

And so, my friends, after having placentas collecting in my freezer for over 5 years...they are now out and in the ground. May the delicious fruit love it's source of life...my children.

8 Riveting COMMENTS:

  1. Congratulations on the "birth" of your placenta trees. My sister did that and yes, I thought she was a little nuts but still very cool. I, too, was a high school debate champion. I had no idea we belonged to the same "nerd club". See, that's what makes blog stalking so fun!

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  2. You are the reason why I take time to read blogs. Placenta trees. Brilliant. Crazy. But brilliant.

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  3. Bridget, I was on the Snohomish High School debate team the first year Snohomish had a team (1992). We were terrible. Am I still a nerd if we were terrible? Anyway, I hope your trees bring you joy!

    P.S. Was the conversation you posted between the sisters part of your skit?

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  4. Umm...ya. A little speechless. I will make fun of you for this just so you know! hahhaha!

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  5. Hi Becky, YES the quote is from the skit. Writing this post brought back so many memories and there are so many other fabulous parts of the piece. ha ha ha

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  6. My midwife always asks if I want to keep the placenta...I've heard all sorts of things to do with them, but always decline. Planting a tree is actually a cool thing to do with it, but I haven't done it. Now I know someone firsthand that does. Glad you don't make stew with it--I do think that's a little yucky.

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  7. I never knew you were so crazy! And I lived with you for so long. Congratulations to Tymon for his longsuffering and patience!~ HAHAHAHA

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  8. Creepy? Yep.
    Cool? Yep.
    Do you care what anyone thinks, really? Nope!
    Is that a good thing? Yep!

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