Considering how long we’ve been together, I don’t really know all that much about my uterus. I take it on faith that I have one, and I know where it’s located, but I can’t say that I know it like the back of my hand, which is speckled and knobbly. It’s reputed to be like a little purse, but it’s stretchy, and capable of great things if pressed upon by a fetus, say, or a fibroid tumor, which resemble each other in the early stages. Mostly, it’s like everything else in my body. I don’t pay much attention to it unless something goes wrong. And I’m one of the lucky ones for whom nothing much goes wrong. I’m nominally in charge of everything in my body, but I’m not the president or anything, or the social director, or the camp counselor. I expect everybody to entertain themselves and play nice. I’m more like the facilities manager, responsible for keeping the heat on and some minor janitorial duties.

We’re supposed to be proud of our uteri, as if we’d sculpted them ourselves, but I’m not. It’s a badge of womanhood, but I don’t identify so strongly with my sex as to consider it a matter of honor to have all the parts. Not that I identify with the other sex either, or any of the in-between models; it’s just that it could have gone either way so easily, if a different sperm had edged out the winner. I could just as easily have had completely different paraphernalia, and that would have been fine too. It might even have been a lot of fun, although it seems to involve a lot of unsightly flopping around, and as the facilities manager I would have had to contend with some rogue outfit hanging out in the front parking lot and operating outside of my authority.

The Facility. Photo by Doug Bloem

So I’m okay with having a lot of equipment that remains mysterious and unseen as long as everything is going right. I know where my uterus empties out, but I’m a little unclear how it is hooked up, and to what. Seems like everything is just sort of bobbing around up there and only maintains its position because it’s crowded and there’s no place to wander off to. It might want to push to the front of the parade route and watch things go by, but it’s kind of stuck. Of course, sometimes they do come unhooked. Some women discover that their uterus is hanging right outside them, inside-out. This is called a “prolapsed” uterus because there it is, in your lap. It’s not ideal. If you’re a girl, and there’s something hanging between your legs, something has gone wrong.

Every now and then, though, I get to thinking that even though nothing has gone wrong, I should be paying more attention to my uterus, especially since so many other nice people want to help me manage it, mostly Republicans. They’re, like, experts on the subject of my uterus. They know all sorts of things about it.

They want to make sure that whoever gets past the velvet rope in my facility should be allowed to party until they’re good and ready to leave, even if they’re tearing up the curtains and smashing furniture. Even if they burn the place down. And that I must be compelled to let them play and clean up afterwards. They don’t care how much it costs or what kind of toll it takes. I don’t know. They seem like well-intentioned people, but you know what? It’s my facility.