15 August 2006

DANGER: Normal Bodily Functions Ahead

Hey, I'm a nurse and an ER nurse at that. I am comfortable with body functions and warn you to come here prepared to read about the odd fart, belch or shit...death...disease. Oh, and sex. Gotta get used to that, if you want to hang out here.

My body made its functions abundantly and painfully clear to me this morning. An alternate title for this post was "Pain/Pleasure" in honor of that hour. Then other things, like this post at Bitch | Lab drove me deeper into my ponderance of bodily functions.

I was up until 4:30 last night. Don't know why. I had a really primo orgasm at some point during the evening or early morning hours. Can't quite recall the details. I have so many any more they tend to run into each other. Not that I'm complaining about that.

Yes, I'm feeling better and believe I am out of my slump, on the downhill side of the latest hump. I had my period for a long time during my last breakdown on the self-awareness super highway. I'm beginning to think some of my issues might be hormone-related, that the exorcism of the evil demon menstruation has finally begun. My libido rebloomed once the sludging stopped.

I'm beginning to suspect the fact that I wake up most mornings with the chest and upper back of my tee-shirt drenched has less to do with the ambient temperature and more to do with my estrogen level. What was that??? The lasts gasps of a dying ovary? Woo-hoo! Have you always had this kinky desire to watch a middle-aged woman chronicle her menopause? You may have made it to the right place!

Anywhooo, Since I hadn't gotten to bed until 4:30, alarm set for nine to make my noon therapy appointment, I was mighty surprised when I awoke at 6 AM. Okay, up to pee and, what's this...I need to let go a little gas?...Hey, no problem. Do it. Back to bed. (Mind you, I'm a nurse so I have a bladder with the volume capacity of the Exxon Valdez. I do not normally awaken to pee and this amount was, to coin a phrase, 'piddly.')

Three minutes later, another urge, more pressing than the first. Thankful the sun had risen enough for me to make the trip without extraneous light, I stumble into the bathroom for the second time then back to bed. Over the course of the next hour, I made the trip 8 to 10 more times, finally resulting in full-blown diarrhea by the time I was done. And then I got to throw up once, after lighting my first post-diarrheal episode cigarette. Joy.

Each time I'd return to bed, praying for that to be the last trip only to repeat it inside 5 minutes. On the hopper, I'd lean my head on the ceramic of the sink, my cheek grateful for its coolness. That is, until the next wracking spasm whipped my head back, made me sit at attention to the searing brand inside my gut.

It came in waves, the pain. Spasmodic. With each peristaltic motion I could feel the source of my agony descending. Somewhere in there was a terrible alien struggling to be born and ripping out my innards to get there. I began to steel myself for the next onslaught. I reverted to my LaMaze classes and my labor with my son, when I screamed at his father, "This is going to be an only child!" during transition.
I was only half joking.

In case I've never mentioned it, I had a great deal of ambivalence about motherhood prior to my pregnancy, even though his conception was carefully planned. These were contractions, however, which would bring into the world something I never wanted and didn't want to bear. Despite the similarity of sensation, this was the crucial difference. I had wanted my son.

I began to ride each wave, to allow it in to wash over me. I flowed with it rather than struggle against it. I breathed so deeply at times in trying to submit to the pain I thought I might pass out with the next wave. The feeling of having gotten through another wave, another contraction, was exhaustion, elation, accomplishment, survival. Just like birth.

I also made note of the fact that the moans leaving my throat as I rode each rising crescendo of pain were eerily reminiscent of my voice during sex or at climax. Can I tell you how much I love the word climax as an alternate to "orgasm?" "Orgasm" is so clinical it's depressing. "Climax," now, is different. It has hints of mystery, suspense, great literature, pulp fiction, symphonies, waves, primal forces of nature.

It's all connected. The pain. The pleasure. The earth. The senses. The moans of sex and of a very painful bout with (?) food poisoning. (Given that it only lasted an hour, I'm leaning toward something I ate as a culprit, the spinach & cheese quiche with brussel sprouts from yesterday's dinner immediately springs to mind, though they were terribly tasty.) The pleasures of the afterglow in the blissful absence of pain during those brief respites.

The labor of a woman and birth of a child.

It's all the same thing, folks.
Sex is no different than any other normal bodily function. Our bodies are designed (intelligently or through the process of natural selection, I don't care) to perform many functions. Many of the functions for which we are designed are present whether we're conscious of them or not. The drive for food, wellbeing, procreation (don't hit me for that one...I'm not saying everyone has every one of these proclivities), for interaction with other humans and the drive for sensual pleasure.

I don't just mean sexual pleasure, because the senses are much more than just sex. Sensuality is so diverse. The sensual pleasure of lingering in a cool shower on a steamy day, the taste of the food that sustains us, the scent of our children and partners. As well as the pleasure to be derived, simply for the enjoyment of the sensations, through experiencing sex.

But sex is no more magic than a cool shower, a pleasing aroma or a really good BMW. (Tell me I didn't write "a really good BMW" when I meant "a really good BM!" Of course, a really good BMW is very sensuous, too!) Repeat after me, folks...SEX IS NOT MAGIC.

Once we learn that it's no different from any other perfectly normal, natural body function we can let go the notion that offering sex is offering something of the utmost importance. Offering intimacy other than sexual pleasure is magical. Simply sharing sexual pleasures is not to be revered, just enjoyed.

(Damn, I hope this makes sense when I read it in the morning. I've got to get to bed...The Lunesta's kicking in and the bathroom struggles this morning still leave me feeling weakened. Don't be surprised if a little editing is done on the morrow. Night all.)

: Umm, life / sex / that's enough for now


At August 17, 2006 9:06 AM, Blogger Hedonistic Pleasure Seeker said...

I can soooo relate to this post. Thank you!

At August 17, 2006 9:30 AM, Blogger Cheryl said...

My pleasure, HPS!


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