My latest book is The One Who Swam With The Fishes.
"A mesmerizing account of the well-known story of Matsyagandha ... and her transformation from fisherman’s daughter to Satyavati, Santanu’s royal consort and the Mother/Progenitor of the Kuru clan." - Hindustan Times
"Themes of fate, morality and power overlay a subtle and essential feminism to make this lyrical book a must-read. If this is Madhavan’s first book in the Girls from the Mahabharata series, there is much to look forward to in the months to come." - Open Magazine
"A gleeful dollop of Blytonian magic ... Reddy Madhavan is also able to tackle some fairly sensitive subjects such as identity, the love of and karmic ties with parents, adoption, the first sexual encounter, loneliness, and my favourite, feminist rage." - Scroll
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29 August 2007
I can now cross my uterus off the list of things I have seen
"I have to clean up the cat litter," I said, sulkily, "And I have some errands to run. But now I know where it is! Yay! I'll totally go on my own."
"Um," she said, "Right. Just get your ass here."
"But she'll look at my hoo ha!" I wailed.
(Minor digression: After the appointment yesterday, as I followed Diabolique around for all the other things she had to do, I kept going "Hoo ha! Va-jay-jay! See, I can say that in public and no one will know what I'm talking about! Hoo ha!" She rolled her eyes at me. "Girlie bits?" I offered, "No? Okay--hoo ha!")
Anyway, so no one has seen the girlie bits except for you know, people I'm intimate with and me. I saw a gynae as a sort of therapist/mother confessor, how I would cross my legs and talk to her about sex and stuff and she'd be all woman of the world-ish and pat me on the arm and we'd be BFF, like, totally MFEO. Although, remember that Sex And The City episode where Miranda has chlamydia, and she has to call up every single person she's had sex with going, "I have chlamydia, have you been tested?" So of course, that flashed through my mind, images of me going, "I have chlamydia" and no one ever sleeping with me EVER again and dooooooooom and so on. Worse, was the stray nagging thought at how long it had been since anyone had been near the va-jay-jay, and what if my body was preconditioned to, you know, be aroused, by anyone fiddling around down there. Oh my god, what if the gynae thought I was the kind of person who went to gynaes to get my rocks off? What if I had to pee?
I get there, and I'm a little earlier than Diabolique, so she makes me trot upstairs and get an appointment, with the doctor on duty. "Um," I said, reading off the board in the front, "It says here she's a child specialist." "Well, maybe she does OB-GYN check ups too," said Diabolique, "My friend went to her. Just go get us both an appointment."
So I walk into the reception area and I mumble, "Check up" to the nurses there and they're all like, SCARLET WOMAN HERE FOR AN ABORTION, but nod and tell me to take a seat. "I do get the woman doctor, right?" I asked hopefully. "Oh no, she's a paediatrician, you get the man," they said. Horror-struck, I called Diabolique. "It's a man! And he's going to look at my hoo ha! Let's leave!" "They say men have gentler touches," she said thoughtfully, "And maybe he won't even go close to your hoo ha. They don't always, you know." She wasn't letting me leave. I sat there, still getting scorches of SCARLET WOMAN, from couples with babies and then Diabolique came, and we chatted about the drama that was my life and hers, and it all became very cosy and two chicks at a beauty parlour, when the doctor came in. He was sort of middle-aged and he nodded at us and ohgoodlord, we're going in together? Diabolique patted my knee, and I'm sure she was wondering at this point what possessed her to bring me. We go in together, I'm thinking this is what lamb to the slaughter means and I get it now and I swear to god, v-jay, if you're thinking of ANYTHING sex related, I will personally deprive you of a vibrator for a month.
I got to go first. Of course.
"Um.. six or seven a day?" (When I'm not drinking, which I didn't mention)
"Yeeeee-ah, sort of."
"Oh, every weekend."
"Wellllllll.. it averages out to one or two a day."
Diabolique pats my knee again.
We go on to having a conversation about my period, blah di blah, any problems, sexually active?
"Well, not active active."
"Have you had intercourse in the last two months?"
"No," I said reluctantly.
"Ever been pregnant?"
"Okay, go behind that curtain for an exam."
An exam? Seriously? I thought we were done! But being the sort of person who attempts to follow doctor's orders, I went behind the curtain, the nurse made me take off my jeans and underwear and lie back, knees up, while she draped a sheet over my legs. Kill me now. And, of course, there was a breast exam, and of course, my kurta was too tight to pull upwards, so there was some yanking and of course, through this whole thing I focussed on a spot on the wall singing Under my umbrella-ella-ella- ay-ay-ay in my head.
Turns out, I didn't have to worry about being, um, remotely erotically charged. If this was a gentle touch, I bet women are like Marquis De Sade. There was some probing, a long dildo type thing was inserted and some more probing and then he said, "Look." I looked, and he was pointing at a TV monitor. "That's your uterus." I felt like I was in one of those movies where they show the baby's heartbeat for like the first time and I was all awwwwwwww, look how pretty. (Only, of course, I couldn't find it. There were grey spots and black spots.) Then I got to get off, and Diabolique went in, and we were both pronounced clean and healthy. "Use a condom during sex," he told me. Duh. "And come back in ten days so we can do a cervical exam."
So, I have a healthy va-jay-jay. And I don't have to go back for another year. (What? You thought I was going to have my cervix examined? Really?)
ps: So, Facebook (which I love) has this new application called Superlatives (we have a lot of time on our hands--my friends and I) and basically, it lets you nominate your friends for things--like Most Likely To Wind Up Drunk In Ireland or Most Likely To Be Distracted By A Shiny Object. So, anyway, your Superlatives are on your profile page, along with which one you have the most of. Guess what mine is? Guess? No? Most Likely To Be A Drama Queen. At first I was all like drama queen? c'est moi? Never! But, on reflection, I concede. I so am a drama queen. It makes life more interesting.