I just about died the first time it
happened. It was the middle of the night and I was sound asleep when
it woke me up. This vibration rocked through the bed. I was
shocked! I couldn’t believe it! I was almost paralyzed with
surprise if that’s possible. I thought it couldn’t get any
worse, but of course, it could. My boyfriend was awake and lying
next to me, watching TV.
I wanted to lie there with my eyes shut,
pretending to be asleep but I opened my eyes and looked over at him.
“Was that me?” I asked, not knowing whether to laugh or cry. He
started laughing, “Oh, honey, you do that all the time,” he
said. “What do you mean, I do this all the time?” I burst. He
looked at me with a little pity and a lot of love: “It just
started recently, but it’s kind of a lot,” he said and laughed.
“Kind of a lot” – those words kept
going though my head. It had happened more than once. What’s wrong
with me? I’ve been eating a lot of hummus lately…I wonder if
that’s it. Allergies? Stress? Age? Is it fixable? I needed
At first I was too embarrassed to talk to
anyone about my problem, but I finally opened up to a coworker.
“It’s totally normal, after 30. I do it all the time,” he
assured me. Maybe that’s OK for men, I thought, but this was
certainly not normal for women. I had no choice but to talk to
people about my problem.
I started with my grandpa, who was very
proud of the fact he’s got the same problem. “It must run in da
family ‘cuz me an your bradda fut pleny,” he said proudly.
Others blamed protein consumption, dairy and
tomatoes. The doctor told me to watch what I eat, take two Gas-X a
day and to come back to his office if it persists.
What surprised me was the number of women
who have a similar condition. Generally, it’s a topic women
don’t discuss, but when I started asking around, a lot of women
ted to…well…having stomach problems, too.
So ladies, know that you are not alone. For
everyone else – if there’s ever a moment in your life when you
feel like you alone have some problem or are in some obscure
situation, just think “nocturnal flatulence,” have a good laugh,
and know that most likely, there’s someone, somewhere, who’s
just as embarrassed, upset, lonely, depressed, sad, bloated or
gaseous as you.
Malisa Uchida is the co-host of “Saturday nights with
Steve Bohlen and Malisa Uchida” on KHVH 830am - Saturday from 6pm
to 9pm. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.