It is very important to me that my girls grow up with a very self confident outlook towards sex and body acceptance. I grew up in a very strict Christian household. In our church we weren't allowed to wear clothes that showed our body. nothing too tight or too short. We couldn't wear pants, makeup and even earrings that "dangled" were out of the question. So much of the woman's appearance was policed and as I grew up and went off to college I saw that as oppressive. So this translated to me really wanting to equip my daughters with knowledge and social contexts in order for them to make their OWN decisions as they grow into women. Society bombards our girls with images and misconceptions of sex and sexuality and I want to get ahead of it. I want them to be comfortable talking with me about their concerns about their bodies and sex. So I took the first opportunity to introduce them to reproduction when I was pregnant with #4. I explained to all the girls that they have tiny eggs in their bellies that will one day be a baby once they are all grown. We went through the biology of the egg and sperm coming together to form a baby that grows in mommy's tummy and when the baby is big enough, the mom pushes the baby out her Vagina. They were so intrigued by what was going on with the woman's body they didn't even ask where the sperm came from. Their jaws dropped. They couldn't believe such a big baby comes out a small space. I agreed with them, "its amazingly incredible how that happens". I chuckled
Fast forward about 6 months later. My #1 and I were laying on the floor having some one on one time before bed. I decided to do a BodyScan meditation with her because she sometimes needs to unwind to fall asleep. We were practicing bring certain parts of the body to awareness and then letting it fade to the back. Starting with her feet, then moving up to her legs, knees and thighs. Then to her pelvis and belly. She laughed at the word Pelvis then asked what is that. I turned on my side and talked about the area between her hips that connects her upper body to her legs. She was satisfied with that response but I wanted to take the opportunity to check in with her. What did she know about sex and what were her 3rd grade counterparts discussing. She's 8 now and kids for sure were talking about sex when I was 8, So I wanted to assess where she was. I asked her, "What do you know about sex?" "Sex, What's that?" She responded with a puzzled look on her cute little face." Yes! I thought to myself. I will be the first to tell her about it. I was glad I caught her in time. We very straight forwardly and candidly walked though the process together of how a sperm comes together with an egg to make a baby. It was a very natural next chapter to our first discussion 6 months ago. She was so intrigued and puzzled about why grown ups do this. Why would anyone want a penis in their vagina. I told her with a straight face that there will come a day when that concept will not be weird. I smiled. She shrugged, "ok." in her typical nonchalant way and then we both rolled back on our backs. I thought to myself, this conversation will not be this straight forward with her sister when that time comes. I can already anticipate the furry of questions that I'll be flooded with during our conversation. We finished our body scan up to the belly, chest, neck and head. We breathed deeply and intentionally bringing our entire bodies into awareness and letting everything fade to the back. When we were done I gave her a big hug and told her I love her and always enjoy talking with her. She agreed, then I tucked her into bed and asleep she went. I'm looking forward to the evolution of this conversation as she grows.