When I was younger and my sexual energy was blooming, I hated my vagina. I thought it was ugly, asymmetrical and strange; it wasn’t neat and all tucked in as I thought it should be.
Labiaplasty, as I had googled it, is the reducing of the labia, the skin that makes up the appearance of the vagina. Obviously, what I discovered in this pursuit is the incredibly diverse appearance of the vagina.
It seemed that a google education should have made me feel more normal, as I discovered that normal didn't in fact exist. Instead it cemented in me, the decision that I needed to be this idea of normal I had absorbed from societies toxic thought forms, fed through the media and porn. That I had to hide, change and shame by body for the way I am.
I cocooned myself in the darkness of my body shame, wishing my youth away into the freedom of adulthood, independence, a new country where I would finally be free of the threat of being seen for my true self, naked and vulnerable.
Even during sex, I would hide myself; cover up my breasts or slip under the sheets. For body shame isn't loyal to one part of the body, my entire body was never enough. I would obsess over calories and weight, slipping in and out of bulimia but most of all praying for the day I could change my body for good.
This is an incredibly isolating way to live. The separation of my surface reality to my innermost self, this is how we learn to lose ourselves along the way.
I have always carried the belief that somehow, there is somewhere else I should be. That there is something missing in my life, that ‘once I get there, I will be free’, 'once I do that I will be beautiful'; 'once I change, I will be loved'.
I remember gathering up the courage on one occasion to confess to my mum, with the full conviction she would help me to get labiaplasty. A little shocked, she tried to open up the conversation of what was normal; but my heart sunk with disappointment and resentment, angry that she didn't understand. It was too late to educate me on anatomy, I was deeply ingrained and conditioned by then with a pornographic sex education of our modern world.
A week later she put an article on my bed, talking about the rise of labiaplasty. But my shame was so strong, I scrunched it up and put it in the bin without reading it. I felt as though I had a secret that isolated me from the world I knew. Both the shame of my body, and the intensity of my emotional turmoil stirred by instability at home; put up some serious walls that I have spent the last 4 years of my life slowly breaking down.
Now, discovering a massive piece of the puzzle that all our first imprint of body shame happens in the shame of our first blood, I am angered at the serious lack of real education in the initiations of womanhood. How we are received by the world around us, what we feel about our first blood; has an incredible effect on our psychology how we feel as a woman. The yoni, sacred space of pleasure and of creation; is not abstract but incredibly unique. Resembling the wide and diverse magnificence of the flowering world.
Many of us are aware of our multifaceted, deeply faulted systems that our societies are built upon, particularly in education. But are we really acknowledging the extent of the trauma they are creating?
Our entire societal structures on which we are dependant are specifically curated to perpetuate isolation, body shame, disempowerment. Because when we lack self worth, trust and belief in ourselves; when we forget who we are, we are more compliant and malleable to be moulded into the parts of the system needed to keep the machine turning. Enough, is enough.
The revolution starts with us, with our most vulnerable places.
Claiming back our every inch of our home, our bodies; as complete and perfect. It is in our differences we are beautiful, not in our alikeness.
It takes friction to create new ideas, light was born of the darkness. We are all birthing and being birthed into a new age, where we are shining light on what is not working and often that takes incredible courage and vulnerability. It comes with slowly, patiently and diligently reprogramming our minds and shifting our perspectives. For if we are not judging ourselves, we are not judging others. Self Acceptance perpetuates compassion for others, being ourselves encourages authenticity and truth in the world around us. Women are powerful. And we have forgotten that it is exactly what we are ashamed of, that makes us so.