"Mecca Mecca Touch" by Raj Raj, April 2012
Disclaimer: All characters presented here are product of fiction. Any resemblances to real characters are of a pure coincidence. No intention was made to insult anyone for any reason.
AN: This story is an act of fiction. No one should attempt to act in the same manner as described.
Summary: Puberty marks the sexual transition from childhood to adolescence. The sex hormones estrogen and progesterone in girls and testosterone in boys, which were produced in small amounts during childhood, go into a mass-production phase during puberty.
Mecca Mecca Touch
While going through their premature therapy with Dr. Joanne Murabito, Kitty Barber and Sophie Ardiz were constantly staring at Sardih Bukharia who seemed shy and almost ashamed for being there with those two girls.
"Let me start that premature pubarche and premature thelarche are both very common." Joanne checked that everyone had water and cookies. "It is benign, normal variant conditions that can resemble precocious puberty but are nonprogressive or very slowly progressive." She smiled at them. "Please stop me if you don't understand some term I am using …" She sipped some water, promising pop cans and fruit juices later on. "Premature thelarche refers to the isolated appearance of breast development, usually in girls younger than 3 years." She examined Kitty and Sophie and they reddened in face since Sardih was a boy. "Premature pubarche refers to appearance of pubic hair without other signs of puberty in girls or boys younger than 7-8 years." She smiled at Sardih who seemed to be proud. "A thorough history, physical examination, and growth curve review can help distinguish these normal variants from true sexual precocity."
They all drank water and bit some cookies.
"However …", Dr. Joanne continued, "Demographers usually consider only females when calculating reproductive rates. At any moment, one can picture these rates as being calculated by taking a hypothetical group of 1,000 newborn female babies and, using a computer, running the group through the current death and birth rates for each age group in the population. At first there are no births, but a few deaths occur." She paused wondering how much of all of this were these three children comprehending at all. "As the age of puberty arrives, the hypothetical survivors …", she paused grinning, "... still the vast majority … start producing babies." Kitty almost dropped her cookie on the floor. "When the childbearing years are over, the computer adds up the number of female babies ever born to the original group of females, and divides it by 1,000." Sardih yawned. "The resulting number is called the net reproductive rate. If 2,000 female babies had been produced, the population would be growing like a skyrocket, doubling every generation, and the NRR …", she waited for her colleague to offer her some report, then leave, "… would be … 2,000/1,000 = 2." She paused glancing at her patients. "If the original 1,000 female babies produced exactly 1,000 female babies, there would be replacement reproduction, or a net reproductive rate of one or …1,000/1,000 = 1."
She exhaled realizing that this topic may still be much too advanced for these three youngsters.
"The number usually quoted, however, is the current total fertility rate, which is simply the average number of babies of both sexes that would be born per woman in her lifetime if current age-specific fertility rates remained constant; or the average completed family size, as it is sometimes expressed."
"OK. I can see that you do not understand me much." She smiled and then offered them pops and fruit juices. They accepted it eagerly. "The sex hormones affect the body and the brain." Sophie almost spilled her fluid on the floor from the unexpected word. "Sex hormones enter the brain and bind to receptors on nerve cells there, altering the activity of the brain." Kitty helped Sophie to clean her t-shirt. Sardih was glued to Sophie's unusually developed breasts. "Changes in brain activity are related to changes in personality and mood. Just as hormones cause some women to experience emotional changes before their menstrual period begins, and abuse of steroid hormones related to testosterone causes some athletes to become irritable or aggressive, adolescents also undergo changes in behavior related to hormones." There was a sound as of a traffic accident outside. "In fact …", Joanne continued, " … some seizures start in adolescence, possibly related to these hormonal changes."
"The truth is that it is extremely difficult to get through changes during puberty smoothly …", Joanne lifted herself up, pacing over the neon-illuminated room, "… with no tension whatsoever and looking ahead in a positive mood." She realized that they were now munching cookies and adoring their non-alcoholic drinks. "However …", sounds of the police sirens and the ambulance sirens filled the outer space, "… it is not impossible." She turned a round and then smiled feebly at the girls. "You only need to have the proper attitude." She paced back to her seat. "To my mind …", She sipped some of her coffee, "… the proper attitude is ensured by your knowledge about changes during puberty and the role they serve in your life. That is just to say, you need to know that changes during puberty happen in accordance with puberty stages." She almost burst into laughter since none of those present were older than 10. "For instance …", she glanced casually at Kitty's breasts, "… the growth of breasts or pubic hair happens before voice breaking during puberty. Second …", she noticed Sardih's tiny moustaches, "… you need to realize that without changes during puberty your body and your mind would stay on the level of a child." Sardih made a grimace as if he already mastered that period. "And you certainly wouldn't want that to happen, would you?" She smiled but the other three were still mentally on their true levels. "What this means is, basically, that thanks to changes during puberty your body and your mind slowly becomes the one of an adult person."
She paused, letting them try to comprehend the meaning of her words.
After they finished their cookies, she continued.
"For example …", many inquisitive pedestrians were now gathering round the accident scene, police taping the area off, "… due to the poor sanitation in England, especially in big cities such as London, epidemic diseases were widely spread." She paused, checking on her teeth. Children were giggling behind her, imitating her. "It was also very common for children to contract various diseases and die at a young age as some homemade medicine were ineffective and inadequate …", she turned around with darkened face and children got stiff suddenly, "… and many ill children were abandoned during the 16th century." She sat back, her eyes were now half-closed lids with some icy illumination. " Death in childbirth was also common." There was a scream down the hallway and the children almost froze from fear. "Moreover …", she poured more water to each cup, then continued to pace along, "… due to the high costs of seeing a physician and the use of non-advanced medicine, people were unable to cure all diseases with their homemade medicine." She examined her teeth in the small, oval mirror she produced from her pocket. "Surgical procedures were also very basic without the use of high-tech machines and instruments. As the tools and instruments were not thoroughly and properly disinfected, wounds of patients were often infected which led to many deaths during the operations."
Nurse entered and served some more cookies to the children. Dr. Joanne thanked her as she was leaving.
"As societies evolved and lifespans increased …", a crow landed on the window, staring at them. Children laughed at the scene. "The age for men to begin marrying was shifted forward but women retained their oppressed roles in which they were married off and had to raise children with no other prospects. Men had more time to try and attain some level of social status and reach their prime. Girls were at their prime from the moment they were biologically ready to have children." She winked at Sophie. "So the gap between the bride and groom got bigger."
Several of the genes for menarche have been associated with body weight and obesity in other studies suggesting some women may have a genetic susceptibility to weight gain and early puberty …", she sneered realizing that Kitty was a fat kid, "It is important to understand that these 'genetic factors' can be modified by changes in lifestyle." She pretended she was dancing a ballet and girls giggled. "Efforts to reduce or prevent childhood obesity should in turn help reduce the early onset of puberty in girls." She span once more, then sat back on the chair.
"Historically, eugenics practice was directed at the control or elimination of the economic underclass, 'morons', prostituted women, criminals, gypsies, those deemed morally deficient and lesbians and gays." Now children were definitely silent, realizing Dr. Joanne offered some unexplainable word to them.
"The eugenic treatment of lesbians and gays in the past included surgeries such as castration, hysterectomy, vasectomy and lobotomy." She smiled at Sardih. "I know that you don't understand anything I've just said, but …", she looked at her project sheet, "… according to this I was supposed to tell you that." She paused, smiling in a naughty way. "Believe it or not!"
She cleared her throat, sipped some water and then realized that the traffic was now redirected onto one lane only with the help of the police.
"In the terminology of Islam, we may not see any term corresponding to the modern expression, 'people with special needs', or disabled persons who need special care and attention." She paused checking on Kitty and Sophie. "But all the norms and guidelines necessary for the counseling and rehabilitation of those in need have been clearly outlined in the Quran and the Sunnah. What do you think Sophie?"
"People with special needs should be given due respect and attention. They should be cared for."
"I think that all their needs should be fulfilled and they should not be isolated as they are an integral part of the society."
"Beautiful!" Dr. Joanne was pleased with the answers. "Just to add … both individuals and communities must try their best to help them with whatever means they have." She paused checking on Sardih. "Schools are to be established for those people to qualify them to be active members in their respected communities. Job opportunities that fit their health conditions should be provided." Sardih raised his hand. "Yes?"
"Islam pays great attention to caring about the disabled and guaranteeing them an honorable life."
"Excellent!" She looked around. See how you can be perceptive and cooperative should you choose to be like that, ha? "The jurists have tackled the importance of providing medical, physical, and religious care for the disabled and making them aware of their rights. So the community should provide them with care and protection. Yes. Excellent Sardih!" She read some more from her report, continuing.
"According to the juristic rule, you cannot give Zakat to anyone that you have to spend on in normal circumstances, like children, wives, etc., but you can give Zakat to other relatives. If your relative is disabled, it is recommended to give Zakat to him or her … right, Sardih?" Sardih made an important nod since Kitty and Sophie had no clue what was Dr. Joanne talking about.
"I've read a story about this women attained puberty at the age of nine and married to give birth to a daughter at ten." Kitty covered her mouth, laughing at Sophie who eyed Dr. Joanne with her eyes widened. "The daughter had the same experience." Dr. Joanne made a slow nod at the girls. "My understanding of the above is that Islam considers that when a child 'attains', or begins, 'puberty', then he …", she smiled at Sardih who looked like some kind of premature businessman, "… or she is considered an adult." She smiled in both directions. "Hence the validity of the witness. Muhammad followed a cultural norm in marrying and having sex with a young girl." Sophie reddened in her face, eyeing Sardih in secret. Sardih had a wide grin all over his face. "After all …", she tried to ease Kitty's and Sophie's embarrassment, "… she was considered … an adult!" Sardih interloped his arms, looking like some war chief.