Tag Archives: medical

A little bit of news…

14 Oct

I’ve been all mysterious recently… I had to postpone photoshoots (which I NEVER do). I’ve been in hospital. It’s time to reveal all!!!
I hate secrets... πŸ˜›

On June 22nd, I was sterilised.

Almost every parent I know says that having a child is one of the most life changing things you can do. (Possibly THE most, in my opinion.) Nothing can prepare you for the reality and it is a permanent, life altering decision. Hold that thought…

As many of you may remember, I’ve been fighting to be sterilised for a long time. If you’re a newcomer, my rant is here but I’ll summarise:

I’ve never wanted children and hormonal contraception is not good for me. As I’m nearly 30, I decided enough was enough and wanted to be free of the worry once and for all. I am aware that this is a permanent decision. I have been reminded of this by friends, strangers and medical professionals and I have been fully aware of the permanence of this option since I was eight.
None of my friends with children are continually reminded by shocked people that their decision to bring another human into the world and be responsible for them for at least the next eighteen years is irreversible. None of my friends have been told β€œyou’ll change your mind” on announcing their pregnancy. The decision whether or not to bear a child is a serious choice concerning our bodies and fertility and if age 28 (as I was) is old enough to permanently become a parent then it is old enough to permanently choose not to. What matters is having the right to make the decision in the first place. You (or ‘one’) may feel I’ve made the wrong choice, but that choice should be mine to make.

As I said in my viral rant, I got a rejection letter regarding funding. What had not been explained to me was that while funding was denied by my local hospital (which could be for any legitimate reason), it was not denied altogether- I’d just have to go to a different hospital. So when a different hospital called me for an appointment, I was grouchily prepared for a stern finger-wagging and another assertion that I was too young to make such a permanent decision. (As though parenthood is temporary…)
Not so. I walked into the doctor’s office and… SURPRISE STERILISATION! I embarrassingly enough burst into tears at the shock and relief. Yes he went through the usual questions (permanent, surgery risks etc, other options) but prefaced each question with the words β€œI legally have to ask…” which made all the difference. So we set a day for surgery and off I went!
The actual surgery, waiting times and hospital details were stressful and horrid (if you have questions, mail me directly- I’m happy to be open but don’t want to publicly overshare medical stuff) but the nurses were amazing, took care of me and ‘my needy boyfriend’ (the drip I was attached to) and as I was severely dehydrated, I spent the night in hospital where I got a 5am wake-up call in the form of a woman giving birth on the floor below. Changed my mind yet? Naaaaah…

Moving on! Photographers- please worry not. I have two tiny scars- one hidden in my bellybutton, one hidden just below my pubic hairline. I’m back to what passes for normal in my life. πŸ˜‰

Still a fetish model, but almost everything in the shots are mine (and the coat was made by yours truly…)



Between My Legs

23 Mar

I’ve been away for two weeks, touring Holland and Belgium. I was going to blog about that, but as sometimes happens when I leave England and work from dawn ’til dusk every day, I’ve missed something huge in the news and this time, it’s very serious.

As of April 1st, women in the UK who have genital piercings will be classed as victims of Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

FGM is torture. Girls as young as nine have part or all of their genitalia removed- often without anaesthetic or sterilised blades. This includes the clitoris, labia and part of the urethra (wee tube).
It is a cultural practise centred around keeping girls ‘pure’ and it is not only excruciatingly painful but can lead to severe and fatal problems later. This includes:
– Difficulty and pain urinating- scar tissue can block the urethra and lead to infection.
– Fertility problems- menstrual blood cannot escape the body and is left inside to rot.
– Multiple kinds of infection from open wounds and old blood
– Death from blood loss
… Not to mention mental scarring.

This is, of course, done without consent from the girls and women undergoing the procedure. Here it is: for those as squeamish as me, I’ve posted one of the least horrifying pictures I found.

In the UK, there are many kinds of genital piercings and adornments available for women. I asked friends why they have genital piercings and received a range of responses, but mostly these:
– I like the look
– I had it done on a whim and never took it out
– It enhances sexual pleasure

(Image found on the internet. No, it isn’t me.)

Though there are women who are pressured into getting piercings, this has nothing to do with FGM and it is insulting to women who have survived FGM to suggest such a connection.
It is currently unclear whether or not female genital piercing will be made illegal, but certainly on medical records, a pierced woman will be placed in the same category as a ‘cut’ woman. How dismissive and trivialising for the survivor of such a despicable practise.
In a society still uncomfortable with discussing womens body parts, this new law can do yet more damage- trivialising FGM and confusing some as to what it consists of. I can imagine a few dim bulbs under the impression that women are brought to a remote village, given a clitoral piercing and sent home again! The true horror is masked by the non-issue of consensual piercing.

As I am writing, it is also unclear whether genital surgery (e.g. labiaplasty) will be included under the FGM umbrella or not. There are many unanswered questions but one thing is clear: This will not affect men. Men can still get any part of their body pierced without being labelled a torture victim.
Remember last year’s new porn laws, which banned women (but not men) from being filmed facesitting (among other things) despite their written consent?

The issue with both of these laws is that our consent is ignored.
Sex without consent is rape.
Surgery without consent is mutilation.
Either of these things with consent is none of your fucking business.

Pierced or not, please sign this petition to support the right of women to adorn our bodies as we wish, and to acknowledge the fact that FGM is a separate issue- pretending otherwise insults everyone.


Mind control

6 Nov

I’m fascinated by psychology, though I studied sociology at A-level. The problem with sociology, I found, was that addressing society as a whole makes for some cringe-worthy generalisations and I resent hearing things like “children from single parents are X% less likely to do XYZ”. Talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy!! We, the people, aren’t (usually) a mindless mass- we are individuals and everyone is affected and shaped by different experiences and stimuli. I love and hate the idea that the human mind is something we can unlock and manipulate, provided we have the key.
The closest way I have ever seen (first hand) of doing exactly that is hypnosis. Back in Spring, I went for hypnotherapy as a last resort to try and fix a phobia of vomiting that had begun to take over my life***. The lady I booked (who specialised in my problem, called emetophobia), spent half the time talking to me and the other half working around what I’d told her, in order to create functioning imaginary places that could be manipulated to fix the problem. Being full of fantasy and sci-fi and nature, each place was created (by her) to be somewhere I felt comfortable- somewhere I could have imagined myself. I still don’t know the exact science behind it (though I intend to learn more), but I can say that it was one of the best things I’ve ver done and while I’ll never be completely ‘cured’, the fear does not prey on my mind every single day and when it does, I can usually handle it.

I love stageshows involving mental gymnastics – NOT the kind when some poor sod spends thirty embarrassing seconds believing that they are a large affectionate gibbon, but this kind– and I have no idea how it was achieved. Derren Brown, however, makes me sit and think, and not always in a good way. I once watched one of his shows that focused on negative suggestion. He put a kitten in a perspex box and told a woman that by pressing a button, she could electrocute the kitten. It was a Schrodinger’s cat situation, except that if she pressed the button, it would be very obvious whether it was alive or dead. Every time Derren spoke, it was to remind her that she shouldn’t go pressing that button. With about a second to go, her hand jerked out and slammed the little red button. Of course, nothing happened. Apparently, it was a way of helping her make choices in the future, but I’d be interested to see whether that really has helped her or scarred her into never owning a kitten!

His show ‘Apocalypse’ tricked a man into thinking the end of the world had hit, in order to make him more grateful for his life. In terms of changing somebody for the better and encouraging him to appreciate what he had, I’d say Derren did pretty well… in that the poor guy just about had a mental breakdown on waking up in hospital, ’28 Days Later’ style and grew in confidence as the two hours went on. But then, on confronted with a frightened teenager who has apparently stayed awake through the whole thing and a man who is trapped without food or water, is there really anyone on the planet who would not have helped them??
I think, really, that the zombies were a complete overkill and the characters seemed modelled on stolen from ’28 Days Later’. Ridiculously so, to the point that I wondered how Derren’s victim, knowing he had signed up for a TV show could possibly have been taken in by something so contrived. A little special effects make-up goes a long way and I’d maybe have given people yellow eyes or something similar. Fake blood and ‘raaaaah’ noises? Really?? Though the bit when the unofficial leader left the safety of the compound for his infected wife really was heartbreaking, even if it wasn’t real!

Though tricking somebody into believing the end of the world is coming is probably as fucked up as you can get for reality TV, it wasn’t the subject matter that bothered me but more the idea of playing about in another person’s brain without consent. Yes, of course consent was superficially given, but the man had no idea what Derren was actually going to do! How can you truly consent in that case? As a writer and painter, the lady who worked with me had to work rather hard to convince me that I wouldn’t lose any part of my working brain and every change made was discussed with me before there was any hypothetical brain surgery.

Contrasting the ‘scary’ trailers and showmanship of this piece with something he did a while ago about luck, I have to wonder whether shock factor is going to become the norm rather than information and if so, I’ll be disappointed. I was fascinated hearing about why some people are ‘lucky’ and others aren’t and I liked the conclusion, where the subject was shown proof of how he was making himself unlucky and immediately decided to change his ways. This time though, there was no information other than the obvious and while I couldn’t look away, it was out of disbelief. I can’t help but feel that it was a little… dumbed down?

Derren, could you please explain properly how this scenario was intended to work and how your tests picked the subject out?
Also, can we have a catch-up episode or two? I’d like to know what this guy does a little further than 28 days into the future. Can we have more shows like the ‘luck’ episode, and I’d like to know how courage works too.
(You know, as I’m sure you have no pressing appointments and plenty of free time in order to read my blog…) πŸ˜›

EDIT: Whoa, apparently your mind powers have pre-empted my blog becuase you’re doing a show on Friday about the removal of fear! I am mindblown! πŸ˜€

In absence of a zombie picture, what else could I possibly decorate today’s blog with, other than a medical picture (or two)!? Here’s me in my favourite nurse outfit, by Rubber55

Good nurse, photographed by Twan J

(Very) bad nurse, photographed by Perry Gallagher (a long time ago in LA!)


p.s. I have something very cool to tell you next post. It involves ink…

p.p.s. ***Thankyou to Angie, who comes highly recommended by me!