Saturday, September 19, 2009


There's much to do before I head out the door Monday, September 21 for the hospital. I'm headed there to part with my uterus, fallopian tubes, and one remaining ovary. I'm ready to leave now, but hospitals are not in the business of welcoming the premature these days unless you happen to be an infant.
I keep looking for that other shoe to drop, but no thing prolapses. Waiting has been more difficult than this, and, compared to other waiting done, this pales. The prior post on peace might have a thing or two to do with that, the Giver of the Peace the more, I'd say. So I'll wait for the difficulty with one eye open. My restless heart is restless like the Egyptian Bishop's, til it rests in Thee, O Lord.

And I got to thinking (this, my friends, is one of the dangers of being me, a two edged sword, is the act of thinking) what about the etymology of this word, hysterectomy? I recall seeing a photo in a psych textbook depicting a forlorn woman wailing in the confines of a mental institution whilst suffering with what was then called hysteria. Hysterectomy: hystera Greek for womb, and ektomia, for cutting out of. Those pictured women in that textbook were thought to be mad with hysteria, Hippocrates theorized, because of a lack of conjugal relations. His proposition: the uteri dried, was therefore light, migrating north in the body, pressing on other vital organs, creating an interior physical disturbance that would, therefore, lead to madness. Like much of what is 'theorized', by the scientific, I can only shake my head and mourn for those dear women who were misdiagnosed by those situated to do so from Hippocrates to the present day.

I can assure you that if a lack of sex were the cause of hysteria, I too would be featured in the pages of a textbook, swooning from the condition. Think me too forward? Perhaps.

I can steel myself from the misinterpretations of the word hysteria, the stigmas, the wrong-doing, because, it has not been done unto me. I've even joked that I'm submitting to a hysterical-ectomy. For those dear souls, men & women who suffer from mental illness, this is not the case. Their battles have nary a thing to do with floating uteruses. I'm no modern day crusading Dorthea Dix. I haven't the the fortitude to fight that cause, I'm a vain blogger who's getting ready to lie down to ether, reflecting on the etymology of a word. As I reflect, I wonder if we might, you and I, stop and ponder before uttering words like hysterical, hysteria, or any other word for that matter.

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