Murderous Uterus / by Dana Bergstrom

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This is the name of my all grrrl heavy metal band. I'm the screaming lead singer and occasional bass player. My other band is Lady Potbellies. It's a folk group I formed after being asked if I was pregnant for the third time. Nope, I'm just fat. Thanks for asking!

Alright. I fib. Not about the part where people assume that I am with child though. That's true, but I haven't officially started any bands. YET.

Murderous Uterus is what I call my lady organ each month when cramps send me straight to bed, wishing I were dead or, at the very least, drugged to the point of unconsciousness.

My gynecologist has tried to talk me into getting a hysterectomy a number of times and although I'm not against surgery, it just hasn't felt like something I want to do.

To deal with the womb pain, I usually do Jin Shin Jyutsu self-help holds while re-watching episodes of Arrested Development on Netflix. It's difficult to be miserable when you're laughing really hard.

However, last month I tried a new approach because I'd just finished watching the Arrested Development series for the fourth time and also because I'm learning about the power of thought to create my experience.

So while I was lying in bed, feeling like I was being repeatedly stabbed in the gut, I quieted my mind and asked the uptight uterus a question.

"What is at the core of all of this physical pain?"

The answer instantly appeared.

"I'm angry I was born a girl. Girls aren't allowed to do what they want."

Whoa! I really didn't expect an answer so quickly but there it was.

And after I let it settle in, I realized that I believed it to be totally true.

I've been told my entire life that I cannot do lots of things I want to do because of my gender. The way I've always naturally moved or sat wasn't very "ladylike". I've been very careful about where I walked at night because I am a female. I've been cautious about what I wore, so I wouldn't be too suggestive. I've often pretended to be demure and dainty in certain situations because that's what a "good woman" would do. Too many ridiculous things came to mind to list here. I know you've heard all kinds of rules about what females should and shouldn't do too. And they're all total bull.

Once I took a good look at the conditioned belief, "Women are not allowed to do whatever they want", I immediately recognized the pain of constant behavior monitoring to ensure that I (and other women!) fit into societal and cultural norms. It was time to let that old belief go. I was done dog diggity with it. My excruciating cramps suddenly subsided.

A miracle is a shift in perception. And that is exactly what happened. A miracle.

Nobody gets to decide what I do or don't do, except me. My gender has nothing to do with how I behave. It became crystal clear that kowtowing to the many external authorities who maintain beliefs about weak and subservient women for their own benefit is just plain silly.

It was also a relief to recognize that my uterus has never been out to kill me. It seems this lovely organ has just been trying to send a message about a belief that wasn't serving me. And even though it took a while to receive it, it's better late than never.

I'm actually totally cool with my uterus now. And if I have pain again this month, I'll just ask it another question. Maybe there are more hidden and unhelpful beliefs to be released. I won't know unless I ask.