The factory has been shut down. The equipment was failing and has thus been discarded.
That's right, I'm talking about my Cervix, Fallopian Tubes, and Uterus -- and oh yeah, the grapefruit-sized tumor hanging off of it displacing everything else in the region.
I joke and I mock and appear light-hearted about my very recent full hysterectomy, but I am anything but. Anyone who understands humor's roots knows that there lies deep pain, sorrow and insights behind it all -- pushing the jokes to the surface. If I allow myself too much time to reflect upon the meaning of it all, I may spiral downhill. No more can my strong and resilient body warehouse a growing fetus, and man did I love being pregnant. But at 40-something with five active kids consuming my every last ounce of energy, frankly, I'm really not interested in making babies anymore.
Enough with the existential stuff, what I really want to focus on is gratitude. Whoever's read my memoir and knows my "before and after story" knows I'm no stranger to adversity -- or emergency surgery. From being diagnosed with a massive brain tumor while pregnant with baby number 4, landing face-first in the middle of the road after flying off my bike, to the production of fast-growing, record-breaking tumors that seem to befuddle even the most experienced of doctors, still, I wouldn't change this imperfect body for the world.
Throughout pregnancy after pregnancy, injury after injury and surgery upon surgery, it has prevailed -- revealing its resilience, strength, and an admirable ability to regroup and adapt to all its malfunctioning and absentee parts. And despite its crooked, aging nature, I'm awestruck by all it has thra-vived -- often compelling my lagging and subpar psychological state to keep up.
So, yes, I delivered a sundry of reproductive organs last week, left various teeth scattered on A1A and can't close my mouth completely after that biking accident rearranged my face back in 2011. I no longer hear in the left ear since the extraction of the tennis ball-sized brain tumor, and yet onward we march.
Crooked, and strong and peddling along. Unstoppable, dammit.
Me and my body.
Proud of all we've been through and how far we've come.
And if you have a body, which I'm fairly certain most of you do, love it and appreciate it as well. Not because it's perfect or centerfold-worthy, but because it's all yours.