Shell: flesh/skin, pubic hair
Lining: fatty tissue, secreting glands, nerve endings
Use Mild Soap
Douche only when needed
Towel or Air Dry
she only came with the directions i received directly from my mother; the other ones i picked up along the way. the first instructions she received came from my mother and grandmother. while cleaning her, they gave instructions on how to clean her, how to keep her clean, and how important it was to clean her very good. i remember them saying things like:
“ open your legs so i can get in there and clean her real good.”
“wipe to the back.”
“no one wants to smell you.”
“got to get in there real good.”
“watch what i am doing. you see that?”
“you have to open the lips and get in there.”
“now every day you have to wash. some days maybe more.”
“be sure to rinse all of the soap off.”
when my mother and grandmother were in charge of cleaning her they were diligent but always gentle; yet, i find myself scrubbing her like she has been dragged around the worse city streets and alleys.
because i am trying to clean the inside: the VAGINA (the part that holds stuff); whereas, they were washing the external part the vulva -the proper name for women’s outer genitals – which is not the VAGINA. the only part of the vagina that is visible from the outside is the opening. the vagina is actually on the inside and it leads all the way up to the cervix. the VAGINA holds stuff: secrets, accidents, menstruation, sex, birth, yeast, tampons, penises, discharge…
most days i am just washing/cleaning the outside-the vulva. i just want to get the day off of her and off of me. i want to rid myself of the smell and feeling of all day. even if no one else smells her i do.
then there are days i go to work trying desperately to get rid of memories trying to return her to the days of some type of innocence. an experienced grown woman vagina has more than a smell it has an invisible stain that only her owner sees and carries. shame. guilt. oopsies. damn. musk. STDs. sweat. pain. desertion. fucking. sex. grinding. masturbation. sin. colposcopy. biopsy. incest. rape. harassment. unwelcomed touch. abortion.
an experienced grown woman vagina just wants to be clean and fresh again. my shower starts with cleaning her and ends with cleaning her for a second or third time. though i know no amount of scrubbing will erase her story or make her new again, there are days i am determined she will be fresh and clean again like when my mother and grandmother cleaned her.