Monday, June 29, 2009

Teaching Her Children Well

Short but sweet, an essay by Jennifer Matten shows how the human body can and should be part of a family's experience.
In this all-female household, there are no locks on bathroom or bedroom doors. The three of us wander around in various states of undress. I brush my teeth in the buff while my younger daughter, who is 5, sits behind me on the toilet, singing to my rear end. My elder daughter, 8, sticks her head into the shower to ask me about the various “yuck” factors of puberty, about the feminist and anthropological ramifications of shaving my legs, about the real low-down on babies finding their way into their mommies’ bellies.

I tell my girls that what they are seeing when they see me is a real woman. I show them where their little fists and heels pressed against the skin of my belly when they were inside me. I explain nipples, birthmarks, sex. I shake my booty. They shake theirs. We are absurd. We are lovely.
Indeed they are.

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