Let me begin by explaining to the lucky ones who do not know what a sausage wallet is, that some guy, somewhere, at some point in the history of the world, decided that he was going to call a vagina, yes a vagina, a sausage wallet. I wish that I could erase the word and the image out of my brain. I can not, so now I have forced you to carry the burden of sharing this knowledge with me.
My vagina is somewhat unhappy at the moment. I have thrush. This is the 3rd time in my entire life that I have had it and the second time in the last 6 weeks. Something it wrong. Most women recognise that thrush is not a disease and does not have to be sexually transmitted either but that in actual fact thrush is your bodies way of saying “Hold the fuck up, I’m tired and I need a break!” More often than not when you stop stressing, begin eating healthy food, sleep, and allow your body and mind to become friends again, like magic, the thrush will go away.
I normally use coconut oil and bath in Epsom salts and my vagina is back to her happy self. BUT. Sometimes thrush is caused as a reaction to a bacteria or germs that someone else is carrying and pass on to you. This can be passed on with fingers, mouth or penis. It is important to understand that thrush itself is not something that you get, thrush is your vagina’s response to something living in her ( or you) that she doesn’t like.
I have a penis. This penis that I have belongs to a tall beautiful man. This tall beautiful man has hands which he uses to hold his penis when he wees. Because this man is a human he eats and reads and often types or answers the phone. He touches door handles and restaurant counter-tops and so on a so forth. His skin in constantly in contact with humans and their bacteria.
So as I said before, I have a penis. This penis gets handled by those hands that I just described. We all like to believe that we wash our hands as much as we need to , but we don’t. So now the germs and bacteria that are on his hands are also on his penis and are probably all over his mouth. This penis, this mouth and these hands wander around my body doing all types of wonderful things and often end up in my vagina, doing, well….. More wonderful things.
The germs and bacteria, on a good day when I am strong and healthy, don’t bother me, I don’t even know that they are there. They hang out for a while, die and then come out in my discharge as with anything else that my vagina doesn’t like the looks of. The vagina is so wonderful. She cleans herself, all day, every day even when life makes it hard for her.
In life, patriarchy tells me that I need to keep clean, stay neat, be beautiful, not get pregnant young, not have cottage cheese discharge and when I do, I’m dirty and slutty and uneducated. (I fucking love patriarchy, isn’t it the best!) But now I learn that all of these things that I am not supposed to get or be, are often caused by, aggravated and initiated by men.
The first time I got thrush was when I first started regularly using condoms. It was early on in my relationship. My vagina was NOT impressed. “Who is this penis and why is he wearing a unitard?” is what she must have been thinking. She hated it, so she tried to kick it out. Oh the joys of cottage cheese.
The second time I got thrush my immune system was really low. My partner might not have had anything to do with it but he just as easily could have passed on some or other germ or bacteria that caused me to get thrush. This time around I feel like a pro. I am treating myself for the possible internal, vaginal-thrush that can occur rather than just the outer, external vaginal thrush that shows systems.
This is where my learning began. The sister in the pharmacy casually told me that vaginal cream , even though it is called vaginal cream, is actually intended for both men and women. My boyfriend furrowed his brow with confusion when I explained that he too had to use this cream.”It’s vaginal cream,” he said. “It is meant for the vagina.” No! The fuckery of patriarchal dominance decided to call it vaginal cream because my wonderful, magical vagina shows me that there are things inside that she doesn’t like (hence the cottage cheese). Whereas your penis, It just harbours and hides germs and bacteria rather than letting you know that they are there. This cream cleans and clears the area of unwanted germs that’s all. Why call it vaginal cream when actually it is just genital cream?!
Dear sausage wallet. Thank you for being amazing and for teaching me that most of the time when you leave me piles of cottage cheese in my panties and I feel like I have lost all ability to look after myself , actually I am doing well and the issue, as it so often does, comes from the outside and it’s inability to meet me half way.