I have more to say about Vaginas

Today I have the debut guest post on the site Making Midlife Matter writing about women’s desires to erase the laugh lines of life from their faces with a ubiquitous injection.

making midlife matter logo
Excellent new Website edited by incredibly talented women. Elena’s personal blog is http://www.livingwithbatman.com/

My article is a lightly edited version of an anti-Botox post I wrote in the fall. The day I published the original on my blog (Don’t read it, read the one on the new site…fewer typos for me and more traffic for them…) I met a friend for lunch. She is not a regular reader (I KNOW and I STILL eat with her…but I don’t buy her lunch) I asked her what she thought about plastic surgery and she floored me with this one. “I am thinking about having my lips done. My vaginal lips.”

Four responses crowded my brain at once

  1. What. The. Fuck.
  2.  By the time they are down there no one cares what it looks like anyways.
  3. Other than Georgia O’Keefe I don’t know many people that consider vaginas to be as beautiful as flowers.
  4.  I can’t wait to get this on my blog. (Maybe I should buy her lunch.)

I spat out something like “Fuck my ugly vagina blog down there.” It was her time to be confused. After a few calming sips of herbal tea I was ready to try again. I went with my most uplifting rebuttal:

By the time he (in her case) is down there he isn’t thinking about what your vagina LOOKS like. He is pot committed. I mean, he is already all in. What IS it with the poker. He is ready to poke-her. Oh god the tea isn’t working. I decided to cash in my chips and stopped screeching my outrage.

She is calm as she responds. “The surgery has a 90% success rate.”

I am less calm. “Ninety percent??? What could the other 10% feel like.”

I needed more than a few sips of tea as I contemplated these women, propped on pillows, swollen in pain, watching Downtown Abbey and slamming tequila shooters. These were the 90% success women. The other 10% were mangled, numb, or unable to come. Probably all three. Even tequila and the dowager countess would be at a loss with their loss.

waxed legs and high heelsFinally I calmed down enough to talk about the upside of plastic surgery. If someone is fixated on a particular part of themselves that can be “cured” by a simple surgery why not pay for that confidence. We do a version of this when we wax our legs and put on heels.

Nefriti with makeup
Nefriti probably would have had all four lips done if it was an option in 1320 BCE.

Make up has been around for over 6,000 years. A little injection, insertion, snip or tuck is simply progress. Or so the argument goes. I don’t even brush my hair so it comes as no surprise that I am arguing the extreme case for comfort over cosmetics.

A few weeks later at a “Ladies Mexican Fiesta” fundraiser for our public school I bring up the topic to a handful of women in the kitchen. I told you tequila would figure into this.

One sane woman walked out. The rest of us, various shades of blonde, debated the lip surgery. One or two never got past the idea that we were talking about lips that live beneath our nose despite my repeated cries of “VAGINAL lips.” More party goers seemed open to the idea than I would have guessed. I trod the five house home in my clogs and wondered what the ravages of time and hopefully other ravages have done to us.

What it comes down to down there is that the middle aged vagina shows it’s story the way the middle aged face does. Kids and love and lust have all left their mark. Why would we erase that?

[Tweet theme=”basic-white”]the middle aged vagina shows it’s story the way the middle aged face does.[/Tweet]


My vagina is a slacker


My Vagina

I am not a modest woman.

I am writing about my vagina for fuck’s sake. But still it is tough times on the table, and I am not yet in the stirrups.

I sit in my miserable paper robe, called “huge” by the chipper weighing woman, but barely closing with its mismatched ties. It doesn’t have enough slack to cover me.


When the doctor breezes in she is younger than I am. This should not be a surprise, but it is. She sits on her wheelie chair and leans agains the wall casually. She is inviting me to confide in her.

Here is my list: strange growths in private places (I’m so glad I have a husband), leaking pee when I sneeze cough, laugh or exercise (great excuse to skip the work out), perpetually lumpy breast tissue (super appealing).

My Boobs

She shrugs off the bumpy breasts as she feels me up. Peering down and then up my gown I see her shiny hair without a touch of grey as she assesses my garden of growth. She is complimentary about the thorough type and distribution of my skin abnormalities, but pronounces them benign and moves on to the main event. 

The pap is the best part. Except of course when she says “Lots of pressure, lots and lots of pressure” and I can just make out a dull sensation.

My Litigation

“Have you heard of vaginal mesh?” she asks, her head between my legs.

“Why yes, I have always wanted to use my vagina as an excuse to both sew and sue.”

“Right” she replies. “Let’s wait until they have worked out some of the lawsuits…you will get much worse and then maybe it will be worth the risk.”

[Tweet theme=”basic-white”]“Why yes, I have always wanted to use my vagina as an excuse to both sew and sue.”[/Tweet]

My Menopause

“Much worse?”

“Certainly!” she sings back at me with enthusiasm. “People talk about the mood swings, the hot flashes and the lower libido, but the most pronounced part of menopause is the atrophy of vaginal muscles.”

It is not every day that I feel this sexy.

My birth-days

My first son slipped out at 5 pounds seven weeks early. The silver lining of a premature birth was a terribly tight vaginal lining. Other than stretchy boobs from nursing my body felt pretty much as it had before. It was the second son that created the vast cavern in which my husband can mine. Who knows what treasure awaits. I try to remember that it is the big brain in the big head of my beautiful baby that brought me all of this bounty. Most of the time that helps.

My Husband

Later, when my Steve has me laughing in (and wetting) our bed after somehow managing to enjoy my cave of a vagina I feel grateful for my moderately saggy vagina and its small amount of pee. I have always prided myself on being a bit of slacker above the belt. I am generally relaxed. Now my vagina reflects my true nature. Soft, easygoing, and utterly without primp and polish.

My solution

I am not a vain woman. My makeup includes mismatched nail polish and haphazardly applied sunscreen. In a world where my dentist offers Botox as long as teeth whitening I still consider it an add on to accept the flouride treatment. While my friends talk about fixing their vaginal lips and tightening things up with a stitch I nod with support…and realize I will continue without it. It is the love of my husband and birth of my kids that created this excess space. My fix for the floppiness is to screw my hasband AND the scalpel.

My Happy Place

Things could be worse, I could pee more, bring my husband less pleasure, and have the promise of prosecution in my private parts.

For now I still have a happy ending.