When Your Body Turns on You


Sometimes being a woman sucks.  Don’t get me wrong, there are a lot of perks too and if I had my choice I probably wouldn’t want it any other way.  Considering giving up my innate ability to be so incredibly sensitive alone would be reason enough to stay a woman.  Of course, men would call that being over-emotional which is another reason to stay a woman…men are often wrong.  Seriously, being a woman is not an easy road.

While men are considered stronger, it’s the women who grow a new human being that pops out of a very tiny place fit as a fiddle and ready in a short 18 years to take on the world.

This little miracle wrecks havoc on a woman’s body.  Not just in the months following birth.  Years and years later.  Stretch marks, breast-feeding relaxed pelvic floors, episiotomies, and C-sections are all to blame for years of self-reflection that usually ends with an earnest statement usually said out loud like, “It was all worth it because I have two beautiful children.”  Inside our heads it’s not so neat and pretty because one of those beautiful children probably just did or said something children often do that make us question our sacrifice – even if it’s only for a moment.  That moment seems to come when we are standing in front of a mirror asking ourselves, “What in the world happened to you!?”

But I’m finding out that it’s not just the things that can be seen after child-birth that make life harder for women as they age.  That thing that allows you to have a baby in the first place?  Your reproductive organs begin to fight back for their years of service and assault the rest of your body.  Hot flashes are fun.  Said no woman ever.  Fun to joke about but not to have.

I recently had three months of hot flashes and three months of no period.  That was definitely not fun.  I decided after two years had gone by that I should probably go in for my yearly physical to make sure there wasn’t something up.

Honestly I had been considering having another child.  I know after what I just wrote it is clear to anyone reading this that I am certifiably crazy.  But I love Harry.  And he’s never had a child.  And if I could give that to him…well.  I would if he wanted me to.  That is what I was thinking.  Now, I’m realizing that I’m probably past my ability to do that and it makes me sad.

I’m also sad because that routine exam brought with it an abnormal diagnosis of my cervix.  Low Grade Squamous Intraepithelial Lesion to be exact.  Most likely pre-cancerous cells were detected.  I have to go today for a colposcopy.  I’m not looking forward to it.  Harry is coming with me.

Web MD was no help.  Talk about freaking a person out.  Neither were any of the other medical sites out there.  All I am is scared.  Then I talk myself out of being scared.  Then I’m scared again.  Turns out among other risk factors that sound much more ominous like multiple sex partners, and HPV,  is the very birth of said children.  The more children you successfully give birth to vaginally, the higher your risk.  Motherhood comes back to bite me again.

Both beautiful children are now draining my pocket book with textbooks, housing costs, tuition, and gas money.  But it really was all worth it.  I mean my body would have given out eventually anyway.

Eventually all real boobs sag.  And things get relaxed.  Because, being a woman sucks.  Just saying.   Oh and I still have zits too.

So for some reason today I’m having trouble focusing on anything other than the fact that despite the return of a very normal period last week…I’m bleeding again today.  The day of my doctor’s appointment.  So now I’m not just nervous, I’m a bit embarrassed too.

Today, I will face this like I’ve faced other things.  Head on.  And one step at a time.  I’ll try not to be angry at my body for turning on me.  I’ll try not to be angry at all.  I really want to be grateful for what I have even in these days that suck.

I have a man who loves me for me.  I’ve never had that before and on days like this, it sure comes in handy.  We talk a lot about getting married.  But like we said last night at dinner.  We are less concerned about the wedding and more concerned about living our lives which includes today.  When the ceremony takes place, it will only reflect the truth that is already here.  We are partners and we’re in this together.

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