Chronicle I | Wedding Night Rookies
It was our wedding night. My bathroom felt like some kind of purgatory as I hesitantly slipped into my virginal, flowing white lingerie. Why was I stalling? Why was I nauseous? Why did the walls feel like they were slowly moving in on me?
Hadn’t this been the sacred moment we’d been holding out for? Seven years in the making of controlling our youthful lusts?
We hadn’t told anyone our whole first year of marriage. It was way too embarrassing. And who could help us with this? No one. At first, we just thought we were rookies. We couldn’t do it on our wedding night. Oh well, we thought. It’s been a long day, we’ll make love in the morning.
It never happened that morning. And it didn’t happen that night… nor the next day, or the day after that. The days turned into weeks, the weeks into months, and months into the first whole year.
It wasn’t because we didn’t want to. I wanted to. He wanted to. After all, we’d waited seven years for this.
Finally, I said, “I’m going to see the doctor.”
After a year of anguish and despair and embarrassment at the thought of telling any living soul, he conceded, “okay.”
Not that I needed his consent anymore. I was going, with or without it.
“Vaginismus,” she said.
“What is that?” I implored my gynecologist.
“You can’t have intercourse because the muscles surrounding your vagina go into spasm at the first sense of intrusion, closing it and making penetration impossible.
“It is uncommon, and mostly psychosomatic. I will need to recommend that you see a psychologist.” She said in her concerned Indian accent.
I felt my face brighten. I felt a smile cracking through, despite my best efforts to hide it in the throes of her concern.
I walked outside in a daze, with half of a smile intact. Budding tears would become a torrential flood after the 15-seconds it would take to get into the car. But these were not tears of sadness anymore; these were tears of joy… the only tears of joy I cried in the longest year of my life.
For the first time, I felt my body brim with hope. I felt hope because I finally had a name to call this, a box to put it in. Since there was a name, I was not the only one. Since I was not the only one, there was probably a solution. And if there was a solution, I would find it.
Little did I know in that moment that there would be virtually nothing in print that I could find in books or on the internet about Vaginismus (‘not to be confused with Vaginitis,’ my doctor said). So uncommon, or so hush-hush (I didn’t know which), that nobody was talking about it.
Perhaps such things shouldn’t be spoken of. But it’s been said that a well behaved woman never did make history. This is my history, my story, and I’m told there are others. Since no one was ill-behaved enough to discuss it when I needed them to, I guess I will be. I wish I had encountered one such ill-behaved woman through my lonely, well behaved journey.
to be continued…
*thankfully, today in 2011, there are several online forums where women are talking openly about Vaginismus.