I feel like my parents and schools and churches prepared me for situations I won’t be in, but neglected the ones I have since faced. I am so overly prepared when it comes to quicksand! I know what to do, even though quicksand doesn’t exist where I live now or where I grew up. It was in enough books and movies and TV shows, that I feel like I know what to do. But there are a lot more mundane scenarios, scenarios of human effluvia, I didn’t get warned about at all. Here are just a few of the bodily fluids things no one told me, that I kind of wish I’d had advanced notice of. Kinda gross and TMI, so consider yourself warned.
Sex is kinda sloppy. Maybe you’ve been having sex for decades and this seems like old news to you, but I remember what an unpleasant surprise it came as the first time. I thought something was wrong with me or my body, because I didn’t realize that was a natural part of human sexuality – fluids.
Children are sticky. So sticky! Science doesn’t know exactly how children collect so much sticky or if they produce it on their own. And they need help with their stickiness. Everyone expects to change diapers when they get a baby, but I has no idea how to teach another person to blow their nose into a tissue in my hand and I’ve had a lot more years of needing to do the second.
An engorged breast can shoot milk up to 50 feet. Okay, this one was actually pretty cool and hilarious to discover. About ten minutes later, the other moms in my Livejournal group joined the fun and we all competed to see who could get the most distance.
Mucous plug. Oh good lord, they keep this one a secret from you before you’re pregnant and for the first two trimesters. It’s not until there’s no avoiding it that someone finally lets you know “Oh, your vagina is going to start forming a snot plug that will plop out of you when it’s time for labor.” Maybe this is something people should know about at the beginning of pregnancy, so they realize exactly what they’re signing up for. I have to think we don’t keep it secret for their own benefit.
I think it’s clear that, I at least, needed more sex ed and “your developing body” lessons both as a teen and an adult. I suspect I’m not the only one, and I hope I have educated and horrified at least one reader today. Bodies are weird and cool and gross, and our rights to them are sacrosanct. Certainly no one else should have more say than you over the bacteria zoo that is your body.