botched circumcisionIn an “ONLY THIS COULD HAPPEN TO ME!” situation, my son’s circumcision did not take.

I know, right? I can’t quite explain this, except to say the skin has reattached itself or something like that. I don’t want to think about it too much, because the dude does have to go in and have a surgical instrument somehow pull back the skin.

I’m no longer afraid of my son’s penis (well, I’m almost completely no longer afraid, I still have my moments of, “Wow. That’s weird!”). But I don’t really see what my mother-in-law was talking about when she first pointed out that something was wrong. I talked to both my mother, who had three boys circumcised, and my brothers, who have three sons between them, and no one has heard of a circumcision that didn’t take.

Apparently, after the bris the female mohel who did the procedure had told me that I had to pull back the skin for a few weeks after. Did I hear this? I think I remember her saying something, but then again, I had just had a C-section and had a houseful of people — after just getting out of the hospital — after my baby decided to come early. So I wasn’t exactly paying attention to anything or anyone around me because I was a zombie. (I was even in the other room when the circumcision took place, as most Jewish mothers are, because I cannot handle the thought, or sight, of seeing my newborn’s penis being cut and hearing him cry.)

So, yes, because I am Jewish and am with a Jewish man, there was no question that our son was going to have a circumcision. So while I was trying to book my son to get his 9-month-old penis “fixed,” a good girlfriend of mine called. Recently divorced, she’s been dating like there’s no tomorrow. She, too, is Jewish and held off having sex with this one particular man she has been dating because he was not circumcised. She had only been with men who were. Finally, she did it.

“I swear,” she told me. “I think he IS circumcised.” Even though this man professed he wasn’t (and who would lie about that?) my friend thought his penis was circumcised enough and she actually enjoyed it.

It makes me kind of laugh (or want to shut my brain off) to think that one day an adult woman will be talking about my son’s penis. Like I said, I looked at his penis and it looks circumcised to me. I asked my fiancé, “Well, isn’t 80 percent circumcised enough?” because the thought of him having to get it done again makes me almost want to throw up. My nanny chirped in that in the Philippines they do circumcisions but when the child is nine or ten. Which was not exactly helpful to me, although better at nine months than nine years.

I know a lot of women who will only have sex with men who are circumcised. Yes, we actually ASK men if they are (I used to when I was dating.) I really don’t want my son, when he’s older, to be made fun of by other women because of a botched up circumcision.

And, I hate to admit this, but I think the botched up circumcision may be my fault.

When the mohel came to my house the day of the bris, she was pretty damn scary. She practically yelled at me the minute she got in the door that she NEEDED A BIG COFFEE. I pulled my mother into the kitchen and whispered, “I don’t have any coffee with CAFFEINE in it.” (I’m a caffeine-free house.) So, I did what I think many waiters do, but the opposite, which was make her a huge cup of coffee that was decaffeinated fobbing it off as caffeinated.

I don’t think she knew the difference, but now I find myself thinking, “Hmmm, maybe if I had given her caffeine, this would have all turned out differently.”

(photo: Nguyen Thai / Shutterstock)