Just a brief post, as something has come to my attention and needs to be shared immediately. And I know how much you’ve missed it… THIS POST FEATURES TALK OF VAGINAS!
You’ll be super stoked to know that my vagina is intact and raring to go. I know this due to the multiple doctors that probed me again to check that things were in working order after my heinous 3rd degree tear sitch. Only took 6 MONTHS TO GET THE ALL CLEAR. It was bloody painful, no doubt about it (I cried), but no lasting damage done and a nice reminder from the medical team to “drown your vagina with lubricant when it comes to sexy times.” True story. Not weird at all.
Anyway, I was recently chatting with a friend who is due to give birth in the next few weeks and the topic of my tear came up in conversation as it invariably does. She informed me that she has been plied with advice from some friendly midwives that a good way to prevent any tearing in your perineum when giving birth is to use an instrument known as an EPI-NO. I know, I know, I hear you. What the hell is an EPI-NO, you ask? See the incredibly intimidating diagram below.
Official description: An EPI-NO is a device that a woman inserts into her vagina to train and stretch the perineum to prevent tearing when pushing a baby out. Correct instructions can be found in the diagram to the right and on the EPI-NO website.
My version of terminology: An instrument that greatly resembles a blood pressure cuff for your vagina and/or a sex toy. A lady shoves a balloon in her hoo-ha and pumps it up to stretch it out so it doesn’t break when she gives birth to a giant watermelon with ear muffs.
After first being told about the EPI-NO, I was flabbergasted. “WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK IS THIS?!” I didn’t even believe it was a real thing. I thought for sure all of my very legitimate research (read Googling) on Evening Primrose Oil being shoved up your hoo-ha to bring on labour might have directed me to some information about this EPI-NO. But no. I was left in the dark, doomed to have my lady bits ripped to shreds and have months of vaginal probing by every single member of the gynaecological team at the local hospital, with eager students volunteering to hold the torch so their superiors can see every facet of my cervix. Not to mention the emotional turmoil of such an event. And all along, there was the EPI-NO to help prevent such a travesty. (There’s also perineal massage, which I was informed about and turned my nose up at. Much regret.)
In saying that, pre-baby me probably would have taken one look at the EPI-NO and would have been like “Fuck this, I’m out!”
Anyway, the only reason I’m bringing this to your attention is so future mumma’s can look into it, because God knows no one will tell you about it until after the fact. “Oh you ripped your vagina? You should have used an EPI-NO.”