The middle, if not beginning, portion of nearly every conversation I have with one of our many peri-menopausal research participants is about her health. I asked E how she was doing, mostly expecting to hear bien, everything’s fine. Instead, she admitted to intense pains in her lower abdomen and across her back, you know, like where it hurts when you’re having a baby. She had an appointment at the health center for later that morning, 11 o’clock.
Because I am “already” 22, it is expected that I can relate to baby-having pains. I’ve given up on making any sort of age comparisons as I get to know more people in the village. Meeting 20 year olds who “already” have two or three children seems to me, at this point, not quite relatable.