Sunday, February 6, 2011

On "belly".

I still have lots to say about birth. I read the blogs, I have friends, books, magazines :)

One I'd like to bring up is this idea of BELLY. We say our bellies, our pregnant bellies, our smooshy bellies, our stretch marked bellies, our scarred bellies. We think a thousand thoughts, have a thousand reactions, perhaps our own hands wandering to touch our own ---but it BUGS me, this idea of BELLY. Because when it comes to cesarean scars, unless you have had a vertical/"Classical" incision, is the typical scar on your belly at all? Mine isn't. Mine is nowhere remotely close to my stomach proper,( which at my height is a good foot or more up!) Mine isn't under my shirt, its somewhere else, somewhere that somehow isn't so cute or "ok" to access in those thoughtful moments--- its in my damn underwear. Bikini underwear. Ya ever heard of a Bikini Cut? That is crotch.

Crotch? Is that it, really? Coochie? PussyVaginaPrivates...linguistics theorem aside, seriously, its not my BELLY. Its way down there, and it is all jammed into layers of scar tissue, adhesions, loose skin, fat rolly chubs. Ouchie secret range, they SHAVE YOU range, and it is something I definitely classify as more of the fucked up stuff they don't tell you, lest you revolt and forgo reproduction and humping dudes all together? Hahaha...I don't know why they don't tell us anything. But even though I had my children starting out pretty young for nowadays, I am a very well read girl, and I seriously thought a c-section would involve some kind of straight line boo boo across the belly. B E L L Y. Not this. Its gross. Its stressful. When you feel like your contents will spill out onto the sidewalk like so many groceries out of your trunk, realizing that all those guts will come out of your ____??? is just so upsetting. Its undies and pads and secrets, girlie bleedy yucky secrets, secret pain, secret fear, secret knowledge that you really ARE weird, you really ARE broken, wrong, fucked up, so, so many little brown bottles of effexor and nice stretch denim holding you all together for the nice people to enjoy...but still.

I want to tell you that I am doing really ok. I am! But can I say that a day goes by that I dont think about birth, sections, babies? Not yet. Because I have this thing. This ouchy secret deep down thing. I sit down on the potty, and my sad little tummy pooch sits there on my legs. Just a little. And it hurts. Some. And my actual belly is kinda fat, kinda doughy, but its fine. Its not cut. Because they dont cut your belly.

They cut the baby out of mommy's upper vag, is anyone saying this to their kids?

Its not your belly. Its worse. That's all.


MamaVee said...

I was born with two uteruses. Weird right? And one was totally screwed up and had to be taken out. I woke up from horrible surgery to find that i had been shaved and there was a huge incision/scar/stitches/swollen/omg down there. I was 14. I completely disassociated from all that trauma until after my c-section...and then this last pregnancy, it reared its ugly head and oh my god is the trauma of that scar crazy. Very different than yours, but I'm with you on this. It so sucks to feel broken and no matter how healing a VBAC is in regards to my c-section, I still have nasty, nasty medical trauma that rears its head every time I go near the doctor, a pap smear, look at my scar (thanks weird flap of skin that hides it so I don't have to look at it) and other such triggers. Wish I had something profound to say, but no, just that your words resonated with me.

Anonymous said...

that's all.

SolaceMama said...

O. my. word. yes. Just yes.

BTW, I am just barely 20 mo past my second section. The first could have been avoided had I followed my gut. The second, was truly needed. Oddly enough, it is the second that brought PTSD. Weird, huh.
I found you a very long time ago from ... someone I found through ICAN - I think. :)

Jill said...

Yes, oh wow, I never really thought of that, it's not on your belly at all, is it. :( Bellies are cute and fun and sexy...vaginas secret dirty bad, let's say the scar is on the belly instead! Sad.

Michelle said...

My two c-sections scars, won worn atop the other, are just a smidge above my pubic hair; quite visible, actually. I don't know whether or not I've ever thought of it as being "on" or "not on" my belly per se. I know where they are : ). I don't have a negative relationship with my c section scars; I know what they were for, and why I had them. I had problems with adhesions for awhile but a return to running and exercise plus some massage for a few months broke all of that down to the point where I don't have any lingering discomfort from it. Being a midwife taught me something beyond the idea that "natural birth is good and beautiful" and that is that ALL birth is good and beautiful, even when it's painful and surgical and "not what we wanted". I surely didn't want surgery, but neither of those births seem "less" to me than my home births.
I don't think "they" don't tell us "where" the incision is going to be; they just use more obscure language ie. lower abd. horizontal incision, which isn't helpful in terms of clarity to be sure. But what is also true is that the "bikini" cut was an enormous advantage and "leap" for women when it first began being used in the late 60's. Prior to that, all c sections were "classical" incisions which left a long, vertical and very wide scar from just below the breast bone to the top of the pubic bone!
I think that all surgery is 'scarring' to the psyche because our bodies are the "sacred ground of being" so restoring our integrity ie. getting both body, mind and spirit back where they "belong" as in, being "One". It takes time but it does all come together.

Anonymous said...

I just found your blog via Jill and this really speaks to me. word. for serious.

(also, I have a Greta too - she just turned one!)