So, here’s the scene: Little girls setting the table. Twenty-something girls making matzo balls. Fifty/sixty-something women chopping apples, peeling potatoes and frying onions. And an eighty-something woman, the matriarch of this family, supervising the activities. Nothing unusual about this scenario. We’ve been doing this for years.
And as we’ve been doing for years, we’re talking about men, love and sex. I mean, what else do women talk about while cooking?
But what makes this conversation different from ones we’ve had on other nights is the focus of the discussion. Usually my mom, our matriarch, holds the wisdom and doles out the advice. This time, the expression on her face informs me that she’s totally dumbfounded and must feel like she’s walked onto the set of a sci-fi movie. Because we are talking about using an iPhone for birth control.
Yes, you heard correctly. As we all know, the iPhone may be called a ‘phone’ but using it for that old fashioned form of communication is as out-dated as Morse code.
My mother’s eyes get wide and she shakes her head as she listens. Birth control itself was not around in her younger days, let alone using a phone to tell you when your egg is ready for a sperm.
But that’s what is happening today. There are dozens of iPhone apps used by thousands of young women (including those in our family) to assist in getting pregnant (or not.) In addition, you need never be surprised by your period again. And if your period should catch you by surprise, you can use an app to locate the nearest pharmacy.
By recording the first day of your period, there is an app which keeps track of your cycle and then notifies you of your ovulation day. With just a touch of the screen, you can view your most fertile days, color coded, of course. If you do not want to get pregnant, you avoid having sex on green days. If in fact, you do want a baby and your icon is red, you use your iPhone to immediately contact the father-to-be, find a suitable location and position (your iPhone can help with this too) and go at it!
As we talk, the twenty-something guys walk through the kitchen. One of them is playing a chess game on his iPhone, the other is watching a YouTube video. At least, that’s what they say. I can’t help but wonder if they are searching for some app that will tell them something about their sperm.
Later that evening while lying in bed, I start thinking about my days of trying to conceive. I remember cornering my husband in the bathroom of his workplace, because I just knew that the time was right. I did get pregnant, so obviously we did fine without an iPhone.
Meanwhile, my mom is probably thinking about the good old days when using a diaphragm was a modern invention.
As for the twenty-something couples, I’m hoping they have turned off their iPhones and are enjoying each other’s company. The way it should be.
And the little girls, well, I imagine they are dreaming of the day when they will have their very own iPhones.
By then, who knows what kind of apps may be available? Perhaps one to distinguish the sex of the sperm, their speed per second – or, good lord, even a GPS system to guide them to their destination.