For those of you without lady parts, an IUD is an intrauterine device okay. It’s birth control. Don’t Google image it. Just thank your lady friends for being responsible.
To my beloved IUD,
I just wanted to thank you. This may seem odd, seeing as you are in inanimate object implanted in my uterus, but I think it’s important that you get some recognition. Thanks to you, there is a 99.9% chance that I will not have a child in the next three years. Well, also in part because of law school and its detrimental effect on my social and sexual life.
Just me. Baby free.
I am really lucky. I was able to walk into my gynecologist, get screened for cervical cancer, and get a same-day implantation. I was able to do this all without spending a single out-of-pocket dollar. I am grateful because I have the luxury of making these choices. I am thankful because it’s my vagina and my decision, not the government’s. People may think this is TMI, but if the Supreme Leader can talk about pussy, so can I.
On any other day I would be thankful for this because I am a student, I am 23, and I think my four roommates would kill me if we had to share our one bathroom with another human being.
But today, moreover, two days after arguably the most historic election in American history, I am thankful that I will not have the burden of explaining this to my future child.
I have a very special relationship with my own dad. We are best buddies. He taught me how to tie my hair in a ponytail. He taught me that a bowl of cereal is a nutritious dinner, so long as you mix two kinds together. He taught and continues to teach me how to be a good person, to always “do the right thing.”
So when he and I spoke early Wednesday morning, it was quite harrowing for me when my dad said “I have been your father for almost 24 years, this is the first time I just don’t know what to say to you.” Maybe harrowing isn’t the right word, maybe heartbreaking is.
Because I realized my dad was not alone. There were millions of parents who also woke up Wednesday morning at a loss for words. And as awful as I may have felt, I couldn’t imagine being in their position. Thanks to you, my little friend, I never will be.
Think about your first role model. [“You” as in the readers, not my IUD, because once again it’s an inanimate birth control device, it doesn’t have hopes/dreams/feelings.] You probably can’t remember it because you were probably four and covered in Cheeto dust, but I’ll try to refresh it for you. At some point in your life, likely right after you realized the Tooth Fairy was the world’s biggest conspiracy, you were asked what you wanted to be when you grew up. And, as part of your new campaign to punish all that perpetrated this heinous lie, probably said something like, “I’m going to be President of the United States of America!”
Across the country and throughout decades children have said this. It is said before we know what a Republican or Democrat is. It is said before we learn that taxes exist. It is said before we recognize wealth, race, gender, sexual orientation, and religion as divisive labels.
Children do not say that they want to be President because they have substantive policy initiatives and a specific sociopolitical agenda they want to set for America. Kids say they want to be President because even those with a diet of boogers and Fruit By the Foot (do kids still eat that shit?) recognize that it is the most well respected office on planet Earth. That to be President, people have to like you, they have to agree with you, they have to believe and trust and stand behind you. Whether it’s true or not, children want to be President because they ultimately believe the President is a good person.
Or at least they did.
Back to my IUD—you are a rockstar. You will spare me from some seriously challenging parenting. I will not have to tell my child that although they cannot be a bully, or insult and assault women, or publicly mock someone with a disability, or assassinate the character of someone who disagrees with them, or prey on the fears and broken dreams of others in order to advance his or her own position, the President of the United States of America can.
I will never have to tell my child to aim to be President, but not be like the President. For by the time you and your hormones expire, I am hopeful that we will live in a society where I can tell my future child to aim to be both.
I am also hopeful that I won’t be single, unemployed, and drowning in student debt, but that is neither here nor there.
After I hung up with my dad on Wednesday morning I was not scared or concerned that the world was going to end, I was just really, really sad.
I was sad because there are people who are so disillusioned and desperate for change, they felt a reality TV star was their only hope.
I was sad because for many, this was the response to electing the first African-American President.
I was sad because basic human decency took a backseat to politics.
I was sad because there are people who will utterly deny that being a woman had nothing to do with Hillary’s loss.
I was sad because the electoral narrative had us believing we were choosing between a bigot and a crook.
I was sad because this was a dog and pony show, and as a result, many people were blinded to the fact that the Vice President-Elect advocates funding for conversion therapy and abstinence-only sex education and the idea that smoking cigarettes doesn’t kill people.
I was sad because this morning on my walk to school, I saw a bus stop branded in blue graffiti with the words “WHITE SUPREMACY RULZ” and I seemed to be the only one around who noticed.
I was sad because little girls who dream of being President had to be reminded yesterday that their dreams still matter. Reminded that they matter.
I was sad that children everywhere are subconsciously shifting the mental paradigm of what it means to be successful and what it takes to “win.”
But I am also hopeful. I hope to make America great again. I hope to make America human again. Whether you spent the last couple of days celebrating or mourning, I hope you do too. Let’s hold the President to a higher standard, like we have for the last 240 years.
So thanks again, IUD. Keep up the good work. And don’t worry, I’ll never let a man with tiny hands anywhere near you.