I did something this weekend I hadn’t done in years: I took out a mirror and looked at my vagina. This was not something I had planned to do but my daughter, who’s six, has been asking me questions about “down there.” I figured, what better way to teach her than to show her the real thing?
The last time I checked out that area of my body was probably, let’s see, around 1996. Back then, I remember peering down and thinking it was a bit odd looking, but very happy, kind of like a Georgia O’Keeffe painting. Though it’s been 17 years and I delivered a baby vaginally, I have to admit that I expected to see something similar when I went exploring this weekend.
Sitting casually on my living room floor, I moved my small hand mirror into position. I looked down confidently and then let out what could only be described as a shriek. My vagina looks totally different than it used to. It’s flatter, darker, and thinner. Forget about a Georgia O'Keeffee painting; I think my vagina may like an old abandoned parking lot in New Jersey. How the heck did this happen?
I frantically head over to Google and do a search for “aging vagina.” The first thing I see is an article on Jezebel called “Your Aging, Deflated Vagina Is Like A Hamburger.” “Sagging” is one of the words the medical establishment uses to describe my post-baby, almost 40-year-old genitalia. Feeling despair, I read on.
As we get older our vaginas age, much like our faces. Can we do anything about it? Yes. To fight the hands of time, women are actually having plastic surgery on their genitalia. One doctor, Christine Hamori, performs a procedure called a “labial puff, using a “gauge needle to inject the patient's own fat or other injectable into the labia majora to help conceal the labia minora to create a more balanced look.” A little puff to my labia and my vagina will look like it’s ready to go prom dress shopping again.
I find this all very disturbing. I spend enough time as it is lamenting my muffin tops and staring at the laugh lines around my eyes and mouth. Now I have to consider what my vagina looks like too? For the rest of the day, I can’t stop thinking about what I saw.
But then something really weird happened. I don’t know if it was from recalling the good old vejajay days or if I was some sort of Dead Vagina Walking, but I started to feel horny. I mean really horny, like 1996 horny. I had sex once. It wasn't enough. I had sex again. It’s still wasn't enough. I’m actually still horny.
What this means, I have no idea. Perhaps my private parts want me to know that I shouldn’t judge a book by its cover or that there’s more to a vagina than meets the eye. Regardless, I’m saying no to the needle and yes to new ways of enjoying my sexuality, even if my vagina no longer looks like a luscious Georgia O’Keeffe-inspired rainforest. As long as it still works and is bringing me pleasure, that’s really all that matters.
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