This morning, Bella wants to know, “What’s that thing called so you can stand up and pee?” She mimes standing there with an imaginary something in her hands, spraying imaginary pee everywhere in a really cool way. Explaining, “See, make it go that way. Make it go over there. Make it go over here.”
I smile with a confident cheerfulness I do not feel, “A penis.”
She nods sagely, “A penis. Why don’t I got one?”
I look around for her Dad but of course at mind-cringing moments like these, he is nowhere to be found. “Because you’re a girl and only boys have a penis.”
She is not happy. “What do I got then?”
More bright cheer because Im just soooo happy to be having this unexpected anatomical conversation with a five year old this morning. “You have something really special called a vagina. And a vulva! And you’ve got a cli…ummm…yeah, and lots of other really great things.”
She’s still frowning. “But I can’t stand up and pee like this with a vagina.” And she does that imaginary peeing-like-a-dude action, turning from left to right, directing imaginary pee here and there. In a really cool way.
Clearly this child has seen some
rotten ‘cool’ little boys peeing somewhere. In a really cool way.
“No, that’s right. You dont have a penis so you can’t pee standing up BUT you’ve got a wonderful vagina and that’s much nicer. Truly.”
She says, with truculence, “I want a penis.”
Just fabulous. “No you don’t. A vagina is way cool. It’s the bestest thing!” What a crappy feminist mother I must be. My five year old is spurning her femaleness already.
Bella spreads her arms out at me in wide-eyed grand supplication, and asks, “But Mama, what can a vagina DO?!”
Awwww hell… At this point I cant think of a damn thing – at least not anything as super cool as peeing standing up. Because yeah, from a five year old perspective, a vagina?
Is pretty useless.
I am indeed a pathetic excuse for a feminist mother.