Biological Super Powers

11 Aug

What is up with this body odor I have?  Fernando apporached me.  “Do I smell bad?” I asked Fernando as I was putting a slice of toast in the toaster.  He takes a distracted whiff as he cleans out the sink, “MmmMm” he grunts in the negative.  “Well, then you must be the stinky one.” I say jokingly, as I know Fernando never smells bad.

I know this is a bit personal, but I have always had a stronger than normal body odor.  A few years back I was overjoyed to discover a little thing called prescription deodorant.  I was not overjoyed, however, to learn that the ingredients on this and normal deodorant can be rather harmful to the body.  However, I really was left with no choice but to use it (to stink for the rest of my life and have no friends because of how bad I smell, or to possibly get cancer in the future?).

Fast forward to almost present day.  When I got pregnant, to my absolute delight I realized that I did not need to use the prescription deodorant.  Fast forward to several weeks after this revelation:  I realized on a day I forgot ANY deodorant that I did not reek!  It was a miracle!  Now, having studied a bit of biology in the university, I have deduced a scientific explanation:  Before getting pregnant I was very evolutionarily advanced in that I had very strong body odor (in all honestly, it makes me feel a bit better to tell myself this).  We all know that many organisms release pheromones, which attract mates, which ultimately end up in procreating and passing on an individual’s genes (and if you didn’t know that before, now you know!).  So, I just had strong body odor because it is a trait of survival of the fittest.  Or survival of the stinkiest I suppose.  So, since I was super stinky, in the animal kingdom I am guaranteed to pass on my genes to some unsuspecting individual who cannot resist my B.O. (and Fernando thought he fell in love with me… little did HE know!  It’s all actually in my armpits!  Ha!  Just kidding honey).

Upon being pregnant, knowing that I was carrying Fernando’s offspring, my body had no reason to attract other potential mates.  My genes were already secure in carrying little Hadassah.  So I celebrate this part of being pregnant.

This men's deodorant works for about 10 minutes on me.


Fast forward again to 36 weeks pregnant.  I forget to put deodorant on (a now common occurrence – not only do I have “pregnancy brain,” but why would I put deodorant as a memory priority if I do not have any consequence if I forget every once in a while?).  I notice soon after that I have a stench later in the day.  Uh-oh.  A few days later I notice that I am smelling again, even with deodorant.  I decide to suffer through the smell, as I do not want to expose my little baby to unnecessary harmful chemicals.  I decide that I can stink for the (hopefully) four more weeks that I am pregnant.

Also at 36 weeks in utero, my little offspring can, according to doctors, survive outside the womb without intervention.  Her lungs are fully developed.  And I am also assuming her nose is also fully developed.  No wonder I start smelling again – it is so my dear little baby can recognize me via my strong odor outside the womb!  Well done survival skills!

Lastly, fast forward to today.  My body odor is stronger than ever.  It is even worse than before I ever got pregnant – even with my prescription deodorant.  I guess my offspring are guaranteed to survive because I stink so bad.  I whine in my head, wondering why my offspring couldn’t just have super-eyesight instead of super-scent.  Is there really an advantage of having super-scent over super-eyesight?  I guess I should count Hadassah lucky that she can distinguish me by the way I smell.  Just this morning our dog climbed up in my lap in the nursery and was furiously moving his little nose and looking towards the crib.  I did wonder, “what in the world is he smelling?”  I guess I am a little jealous that Hadassah has super-scent.  I suppose my superpower is pretty cool in the biological world: I have super-odor.


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